Liberty Global to Acquire Controlling Stake in Formula E

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Shanghai E Prix Race Start Photo Sam Bagnall
Shanghai E Prix Race Start Photo Sam Bagnall

Liberty Global Ltd. (NASDAQ: LBTYA, LBTYB, LBTYK) has announced an agreement to acquire Warner Bros.

Discovery’s shares in the all-electric Formula E racing series. Upon completion of the transaction, Liberty Global will hold a 65% ownership stake, gaining a controlling interest in the world’s premier electric car racing championship.

This announcement follows the release of the Season 11 race calendar, featuring new race locations such as Miami, Jakarta, and double-headers in Monaco and Shanghai. Formula E, known for its status as the only FIA-sanctioned all-electric world motor racing championship, is also recognized as the leading ESG sport and the first net zero carbon sport since its inception.

Key Highlights:

  • Season 11 Calendar: Includes 16 races across iconic cities on four continents.
  • Fan Base: Nearly 400 million fans globally.
  • Teams and Drivers: 11 teams and 22 world-class drivers, including top teams like Jaguar TCS Racing, TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team, and NEOM McLaren Formula E Team.
  • New Car Launch: The GEN3 EVO car was unveiled at the Monaco E-Prix, boasting acceleration to 60mph in 1.82 seconds, about 30% faster than a current Formula 1 car.

Statements from Leadership:

Jeff Dodds, CEO, Formula E: “First of all I’d like to offer my thanks to Warner Bros. Discovery for the support and guidance they’ve provided Formula E over the past nine years. Liberty Global have a proven track record of building and growing businesses and their investment in us comes at the perfect time as we plan for a period of exponential growth. Having personally known and worked alongside the Liberty leadership team for over a decade, I’m thrilled to be able to further benefit from their expertise and their resources. This is a powerful vindication of the huge potential of our sport.”

Mike Fries, CEO, Liberty Global: “We’re excited to take a controlling interest in Formula E, a business we first invested in nearly ten years ago. Formula E has a massive potential for further growth while integrating the most advanced sustainability standards in sports. The investment continues our approach of disciplined capital rotation across our Ventures portfolio and our strategy of making long-term investments in highly attractive businesses.”

Regulatory Approval: The transaction is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to close before the end of the year.

Liberty Global’s increased investment in Formula E signifies a significant step towards further growth and expansion of the sport, aligning with advanced sustainability standards and leveraging the expertise of a global telecommunications and media giant.

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