F1 Owners Liberty Media Acquire MotoGP Rights for €4.2 Billion

The owner of Formula 1, Liberty Media, has reached an agreement to acquire the promoter of MotoGP. Back in 2016, the USA-based company bought Formula One Group.

By Divyam Dubey | on April 1, 2024 Follow us on Autox Google News

Liberty Media, owner of Formula 1, has completed its acquisition of the MotoGP World Championship, according to Dorna Sports. The American entertainment conglomerate, who has had the exclusive rights to Formula 1 since 2016, will be offering an estimated sum of 4.2 billion euros to buy Dorna. Dorna has had authority over MotoGP since 1992 and furthermore supervises WorldSBK and the MotoE World Cup. According to the deal, Liberty Media will purchase 86% of MotoGP, while the current administration will keep about 14% ownership of the company. The sellers will receive about 65% of the transaction in cash, 21% in shares of Series C Liberty Formula One common stock, and 14% in retained MotoGP management equity.

The transaction is expected to be completed by the end of the year, pending clearances and permissions from competition and foreign investment agencies in different countries. Although all sides agreed on the conditions some time ago, the ratification of the contract has been delayed beyond expected. Originally, there were plans to announce the relocation before to the start of the MotoGP season in early March.

Liberty Media President and CEO Greg Maffei said: "We are thrilled to expand our portfolio of leading live sports and entertainment assets with the acquisition of MotoGP. MotoGP is a global league with a loyal, enthusiastic fan base, captivating racing and a highly cash-flow generative financial profile. Carmelo and his management team have built a great sporting spectacle that we can expand to a wider global audience. The business has significant upside, and we intend to grow the sport for MotoGP fans, teams, commercial partners and our shareholders.”

"This is the perfect next step in the evolution of MotoGP, and we are excited for what this milestone brings to Dorna, the MotoGP paddock and racing fans,” said Carmelo Ezpeleta, CEO of Dorna. "We are proud of the global sport we’ve grown, and this transaction is a testament to the value of the sport today and its growth potential. Liberty Media has an incredible track record in developing sports assets and we could not wish for a better partner to expand MotoGP’s fanbase around the world.

"The acquisition is expected to be completed by year-end 2024 and is subject to the receipt of clearances and approvals by competition and foreign investment law authorities in various jurisdictions.

About Liberty Media

Since Liberty Media took over in 2016, Formula 1 income has skyrocketed in value from USD 1.7 billion to over USD 3.2 billion by 2023. This American powerhouse is sure to be a welcome addition to MotoGP, given its remarkable development trajectory.

The purchase in 2017 made Chase Carey CEO and Ross Brawn managing director of motorsports and technical director, both new posts. Stefano Domenicali, Ferrari's renowned former team principal, became Formula One Group CEO in September 2020. After this acquisition, Liberty's racing goals will grow, building on its success in Formula 1. MotoGP's funding comes from retail sales, circuit fees, sponsorships, and TV rights, like Formula 1.

Formula 1's fan base has grown substantially under Liberty's watch, in large part because of the innovative partnership with Netflix to create the critically praised series "Drive to Survive," which has been widely promoted on several social media sites.

Tags: MotoGP F1 Liberty Media Dorna

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