McLaren "by far our first choice" for new investors despite Force India and Williams interest
New McLaren Racing shareholders MSP Sports Capital have claimed the Formula 1 team was 'by far our first choice' partner despite historic interest elsewhere.
McLaren announced the £185million sale of an initial 15 per cent minority stake in its Racing division to the company in early December.
But it was not the first team MSP had looked at as in 2018, as Force India battled against administration, it was one of a number of interested parties before it was acquired by a consortium led by Lawrence Stroll.
The struggles of Williams in recent years also drew the investment firm's attention, but principal Jeff Moorad claims McLaren was always its primary objective, leading to productive discussions with executive chairman Paul Walsh and CEO Zak Brown.
"We have been interested in an investment in motorsports and looked at a number of situations," said former NASCAR 'Hall of Fame Racing' team owner Moorad.
“One of them was publicly reported, and certainly that was Force India during its administration process
"It was a good education for us in retrospect in getting to know the sport a bit, and we had a much less serious interest in Williams but certainly took a look.
“I don’t think that we could have been more pleased with how this has turned out. Once our discussions began in earnest with Paul and Zak, we didn’t look back.
“This was the team that we were interested in. If there was a path to create a relationship and a partnership with McLaren, by far it was our first choice so we are quite pleased.”
Jahm Najafi, CEO of The Najafi Companies and also an MSP principal, added that the opportunity to invest in McLaren was a no brainer.
“In over 35 years of my investment career I’ve rarely come across a combination of the right team in the right league with the right people, and this, McLaren Racing, is exactly that," said Najafi.
He added: "We believe in the overall vision that Zak [Brown] has for the team and we are excited to support his overall strategy of making sure that the team continues to be competitive and, in the not too distant future, win a championship."
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