Monisha Kaltenborn, team principal of Sauber F1, has been talking about an investor for some time now. A new corporate partner and/or sponsor has been a theme pretty much since Peter Sauber bought the team back from BMW in 2009. Now it finally happened.
100 percent of Sauber Holding AG, the company that also owns the F1 team, have been bought by Longbow Finance for an undisclosed sum. Peter Sauber, founder and longtime team principal, owned two thirds of it before the sale, Monisha Kaltenborn one third. Now Sauber (the person) is retiring for good at the age of 72, while Kaltenborn is retained as team principal.
The sale also has implications for the driver choice: Longbow is owned by Tetra Laval, and Tetra Laval is owned the Swedish billionaire family Rausing that happens to sponsor current Sauber driver Marcus Ericsson. Looks like his future in F1 is secured for another season if his friends are that mighty.
Other than that, there isn’t a whole lot of development. If the ownership transfer results in a bigger budget or more sponsors remains to be seen. Currently, Sauber is last in the championship standings with no single point scored all season. The new owners will have to decide whether to try and salvage this season or if focusing on 2017 and the big rule change promises more return on investment in the future.