Friday, September 25, 2009

A1GP completes crucial funding deal

(by Matt Beer autosport.com 9-25-09)

A1GP has announced that it has completed a financial restructuring that it is confident will secure the series' long-term future.

There had been growing doubts about the championship's health in recent weeks, with the cars being held by freight company Delivered On Time (DOT) since the end of the 2008/09 season, suggestions that Ferrari was set to recall its engine supply, and with operating company A1GP Operations having been liquidated.

But series boss Tony Teixeira said that the new funding deal would resolve all A1GP's financial concerns and allow the series to begin as planned in Surfers Paradise next month. No specific details of the financial package were released by A1GP, although AUTOSPORT understands that the championship had been in talks with Credit Suisse.

"I wanted to announce this re-financing a long time ago, but the reason it has taken longer than I planned was the size of the package," said Teixeira.

"I could see no reason to look for a one year deal, it had to be for at least three to four years until such a time as the series is independent. This way we can make sure everyone involved in the series has the necessary security and the series is totally creditable."

He added that he was now keen to reassure A1GP's suppliers and partners that the series had a solid future.

"I shall be meeting all of them personally in the next couple of days," said Teixeira. "I want them to understand this is a series that is here to stay on the motorsport scene, and they need to know their involvement is with a series that is going from strength to strength.

"I have seen all the stories written over the past few weeks doubting the future of the series, and these are not new to me as I have seen them at the start of every one of our four seasons. These are not things I like to read and I feel frustrated that I cannot always come out and explain exactly what we are doing, but, as you know, we have always delivered every season and race we have committed to.

"Our intention is to settle all our outstanding creditors prior to the administration hearing, and would like to thank them for their patience and support.

"We at A1GP have been so lucky to have such loyal support from all our stake holders - management and staff, race promoters, team owners, partners, suppliers, TV rights holders, sponsors and last but not least our fans."

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