Switzerland-based investment company Longbow Finance SA has announced that it has completed the acquisition of Sauber Holding, the company which owns and operates Sauber F1.
Peter Sauber, the company's founder, will retire from all active functions within the business, to be replaced in his role as chairman by Pascal Picci, president and chief executive of Longbow. Monisha Kaltenborn, meanwhile, will continue in her position as chief executive and team principle of Sauber F1, and remain on the board of directors.
The finalisation of the transaction secures the long-term future of Sauber in Formula One, which had come under question in recent months. A lack of resources throughout the off-season and into the 2016 campaign has led to stalled development on the team's C35 car, with the team yet to pick up a point this year. Yesterday, the team's driver Felipe Nasr announced that he would not commit his future to Sauber until the insecurity surrounding the team and its holding company had been resolved.
According to a press release from Longbow, no changes will be made to either the name of the company or the team, with Picci saying that he was "very pleased with having secured the future of a Swiss presence in a highly specialized and innovative industry.”
For her part, Kaltenborn commented that the deal would "secure the future of Sauber at the pinnacle of motorsport," adding: "We are convinced that Longbow Finance is the perfect partner to again make the team competitive and successful in Formula One. At the same time the new structure will allow us to finally further expand our third party business in which we commercialise our know-how.
"This solution is in the best interest of our employees, partners, loyal suppliers, the base in Hinwil and for the Swiss motorsport. We are very grateful that Longbow Finance S.A.believes in the competences, efficiency and capabilities of Sauber Group, and we look forward to a new exciting future.”
Sauber will now be looking toward this weekend's Hungarian Grand Prix, hoping the new spurs the team on to win their first points of the current season.