Sports Business : F1 team Williams bought by US-based investment firm for $179Mn

Williams has been bought by an American-based investment firm after being put up for sale in May, the British team said on Friday.

The team will continue to race under the Williams name and remain at its English base in Oxfordshire.

US-based investment firm Dorilton Capital has picked up the team after being put up for sale in May, in a deal that reportedly values the team at US$179.5 million

The announcement of the purchase, which according to Insider Media sees the former owners receive US$132 million after repayment of third party debts and transaction expenses – comes in the week that all ten teams competing in the global motorsport series signed up to the new Concorde Agreement governing the sport from 2021 to 2025. That operating contract with Formula One has been designed to ensure a more level playing field in the future.

A statement from Williams said: ‘This marks the beginning of an exciting new era in the history of Williams, which with its new owner, is well positioned to capitalise upon the sweeping rule changes coming into Formula One with the new Concorde Agreement.’

Sports Business : F1 team Williams bought by US-based investment firm for $179Mn

The British team, who have been in family ownership since being founded by Sir Frank Williams and Sir Patrick Head, will continue to race under the Williams name and remain at their base at Grove in Oxfordshire.

Williams has won seven drivers’ championships and nine constructors’ titles since entering the F1 grid in 1977.

However, the last of those came with Jacques Villeneuve behind the wheel in 1997 and it is hoped fresh investment from Dorilton Capital can get the team back toward the front of the grid.

“This may be the end of an era for Williams as a family-owned team, but we know it is in good hands,” said deputy team principal Claire Williams, whose father, Frank, founded the team.

“The sale ensures the team’s survival but most importantly will provide a path to success.”

The announcement of the purchase comes in the week all 10 teams in F1 signed up to the new Concorde Agreement governing the sport, which has been designed to ensure a more level-playing field in the future.