CVC Capital private equity firm plans a $12-billion market capitalization for Formula 1, in the company’s planned Singapore stock exchange flotation.
The Formula 1 IPO is to take place sometime in the next 12 months, despite the fact that CEO Bernie Ecclestone is caught in a legal battle regarding the payment of an alleged bribe. CVC previously planned to float F1 in June 2012 but gave up the move to the worsening crisis in Europe, and chose to reduce the stake to almost half of it, selling 28.4% of Formula 1 for $2.1 billion to BlackRock, Waddell & Reed and Norges.
“CVC isn’t planning to sell more stakes before the float. If you look at Discovery Channel and other comparables, the market is up 25% since we tried to IPO last year so just mathematically applying the new pricing for the company, it is worth 25% more. I certainly think you could shoot for $12bn,” said an anonymous source.
The source added that despite Ecclestone’s lawsuits, CVC does not plan to replace him, although this move will have to be made sooner or later as the CEO turns 83 this year. F1 currently has 313 employees and 10 senior managers, therefore there is no CEO or deputy waiting in line for Ecclestone’s place.