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Team Lotus to be 'Caterham Team AirAsia' in 2012

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"Not to mention the fact that no-one has thus far shown any desire to buy one of the Lotus Exos Type 125 mock F1 cars."

Well well. Though I was lead to believe they had orders for 3.

http://joesaward.wordpress.com/2011/09/13/one-lotus-two-lotus-no-lotus/?


Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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One can debate all day what proportion of the requisite wonga was provided by Proton versus Fernandes' share, but it was Tony's personal vitality and energetic interest in F1 that put the Lotus name back in the sport after a very long hiatus. While I admit to an ever decreasing attentiveness to Team Lotus' efforts on the circuits, it seems quite evident that his entry into the game was the catalyst that got Dany off his heiny and into team sponsorship---and with any luck, into possible direct Group Lotus ownership in the future. As mentioned, we would then have a "true" Lotus team to follow. And if Lotus Engineering gets involved, we may even drop the quote marks.

Of course all of this potential scenario brings with it real financial risks. The phrase "be careful what you wish for" comes to mind.

Fingers crossed nonetheless.


Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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Are you sure, Litespeed (with Gascoyne) were one of the unsuccessful bidders for the "new" F1 slots, and were going to use the Team Lotus name; presumably with a deal done with David Hunt, but no support from Hethel

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From June 10 2009 Autosport:

Group Lotus plc and its subsidiary Lotus Cars Limited have moved to distance themselves from the recently-announced "Team Lotus" that has submitted an entry for the 2010 Formula 1 world championship, and signaled that they are prepared to take action to protect the Lotus brand name.

(Full article behind paywall)

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'...until a bunch of Malaysians decided it would be a great idea to have another Team Lotus and the government (which owns the name) agreed to let them try to revive the name.'

?

I thought David Hunt owned the Team Lotus name? or should that be 'still owns'?

I have no idea why everyone thinks it is so confusing having Lotus Renault and Team Lotus when there is Red Bull and Toro Rosso? Those cars are almost identical.

It's all quite comical really. :lol:

Edited by ramjet

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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Are you sure, Litespeed (with Gascoyne) were one of the unsuccessful bidders for the "new" F1 slots, and were going to use the Team Lotus name; presumably with a deal done with David Hunt, but no support from Hethel

Yes it was with David Hunt

http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2009/jun/07/lotus-formula-one-return-litespeed

From June 10 2009 Autosport:

Group Lotus plc and its subsidiary Lotus Cars Limited have moved to distance themselves from the recently-announced "Team Lotus" that has submitted an entry for the 2010 Formula 1 world championship, and signaled that they are prepared to take action to protect the Lotus brand name.

My take on that at the time was that this GL statement was purely an intellectual property legal move - GL had long disputed David Hunt's ownership of the TL trademark. This was in the pre-Bahar era, and I suspect GL would sensibly have been quite happy to see a Lotus F1 entry that wouldn't cost them anything, subject to a settlement to the TL name dispute.

But then the Litespeed entry failed, Fernandes and then Bahar got involved and it all got a bit more complicated...

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Hey Anthony, you do realise this is a Lotus enthusiasts website right? And that many posters probably drive Lotus'?

Only the cool kids drive Lotus :thumbup:

Yes I do. I have a question for you enthusiasts too.

How many of you are going to buy one of the new era Lotus cars that are meant to be launched in a few years?

'...until a bunch of Malaysians decided it would be a great idea to have another Team Lotus and the government (which owns the name) agreed to let them try to revive the name.'

?

I thought David Hunt owned the Team Lotus name? or should that be 'still owns'?

I have no idea why everyone thinks it is so confusing having Lotus Renault and Team Lotus when there is Red Bull and Toro Rosso? Those cars are almost identical.

It's all quite comical really. :lol:

Although there are essentially the same name, because they are brand names they are the same in every language. There would be an issues if we had Red Bull and Red Bull-lite, but most people won't know what Toro Rosso means let alone that they once were the sister team of Red Bull.

The main problem with the Lotus situation in that both teams are using "Lotus" in the title.

The media is a catalyst in this, creating confusion by referring to the title sponsorship of the Renault team as something more, either through sheer ignorance or lack of investigation into it. This is no different to when ING sponsored the team, no one called the team ING did they.

My take on that at the time was that this GL statement was purely an intellectual property legal move - GL had long disputed David Hunt's ownership of the TL trademark. This was in the pre-Bahar era, and I suspect GL would sensibly have been quite happy to see a Lotus F1 entry that wouldn't cost them anything, subject to a settlement to the TL name dispute.

But then the Litespeed entry failed, Fernandes and then Bahar got involved and it all got a bit more complicated...

IIRC Litespeed were granted an entry, but they were only going to enter F1 if a budget cap was put in place. This never happened, and a deal was done with Fernandes to buy their entry slot.


What is the difference between an overtake and a crash? An overtake is a crash that never happened!

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Yes I do. I have a question for you enthusiasts too.

How many of you are going to buy one of the new era Lotus cars that are meant to be launched in a few years?

Why? What does that matter in this context? That's a comment of someone trying to inflame for no reason.

Just to give you an example of what mood that kind of question provokes, what car do you drive? Do you have a licence yet?

Does it matter?


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Well should Joe Saward scenario become real! Lotus will be a laughing stock in the F1 circus and the automotive industry at large and it will be a while before it's given another shot in F1! It would be a complete shame to happen but this scenario is unfortunately realistic I just hope things happen at LRGP before they happen at Team Lotus! I guess the winter will not be that long this year!

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The main problem with the Lotus situation in that both teams are using "Lotus" in the title.

So unlike the BBC commentary of the last grand prix where they said "oh the Mercedes McLaren is trying to overtake the Mercedes Mercedes" Both using Mercedes


Dave - 2000 Sport 350

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Antony,

I don't follow F1 and I know that Toro Rosso was a sister team of Red Bull. As Mr Saward says himself though of LRGP and Team Lotus, 'Most spectators cannot figure out which is which, and do not really care.'

Based on that comment, I lost interest in the rest of the article. Another journo just trying to rile up the indians. :sleeping:

Sort of like asking who on here is going to buy a new era lotus. :coffee:

Edited by ramjet

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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Even if the Lotus / Renault deal fell apart, it would not stop Group Lotus being a technical partner with another F1 team, and being able to claim technology overlap. May be a bit more honest than either team claiming to be a successor to the cars Clive Chapman looks after

Anyway this is not confusing, what is confusing is the "History repeating itself" Senna story. Is Bruno following his uncle into the Toleman team, or is he following him into the Lotus team that poached him from Toleman? Does this mean that if you look back at the old contract litigation of Toleman v Lotus, that actually back in its history LRGP actually sued itself?

Edited by simonb

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88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

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What surprises me is how all the conversation seems to be about the costs of sponsoring an f1 team without any discussion on the benefit. As such it comes across as something companies do for vanity reasons, not because it makes business logic.

I worked a bunch of years ago with a f1 sponsor and was very close to the team which ran the sponsorship arrangement. They certainly could account for a list of deals which were at least partially completed because of the f1 sponsorship - namely the opportunity to have the client / supplier's CEO be entertained by our CEO is an environment which we had control and would be hard to get without the sponsorship. Arguably these events can sell more than a whole host of trade shows.

DB from his time with Red Bull and Ferrari will certainly know how both these companies account for the costs & benefits of their sponsorships. The logic will be very different for both companies & I'd guess for Ferrari it's much more about events. Certainly a friend was very impressed by being driven around the Ferrari track by Alonso earlier this year after he picked up his gto.

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I suspect GL would sensibly have been quite happy to see a Lotus F1 entry that wouldn't cost them anything, subject to a settlement to the TL name dispute.

There is no such thing as free F1 advertisment.

Well should Joe Saward scenario become real! Lotus will be a laughing stock in the F1 circus and the automotive industry at large and it will be a while before it's given another shot in F1! It would be a complete shame to happen but this scenario is unfortunately realistic I just hope things happen at LRGP before they happen at Team Lotus! I guess the winter will not be that long this year!

I do hope the scenario will become real. No Lotus in F1 next year. That will mean they don't waste excesive amounts of money on which return on investment will be very hard. Lets get the money in the cars.

DB from his time with Red Bull and Ferrari will certainly know how both these companies account for the costs & benefits of their sponsorships. The logic will be very different for both companies & I'd guess for Ferrari it's much more about events. Certainly a friend was very impressed by being driven around the Ferrari track by Alonso earlier this year after he picked up his gto.

Porsche is pretty succesfull without F1 and a motorsports programme that is more than payed by its customers.

F1 is marketing business, not nescesarily related to car business. Look at current F1, Ferrari which is clearly DB example is beaten by a soft drink. Even now Ferrari has the best driver of the pack a soft drink company can build a better car than Ferrari.

I really hope Lotus will go for Porsche as an example and leave the marketing madness.

DB has to learn to understand that Lotus is not a soft drink, on which u can spend 80% of your turnover on marketing and 5% on your product. In automotive it's the other way around, 100% world wide brand recognition will not sell you cars, making a better product than the competition does.

Edited by plumdeplakmuis

VAN DER LEE Turbo Systems     -      www.vdlee.com

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Maranello, Italy, sound of phone ringing.......

Stefano: "Buon giorno, Dany. Wuz up paisano?"

Dany: "How the figata did you know it was me!?"

Stefano: "Caller ID, idiota."

Dany: "Merda! Thought I'd disabled that."

Stefano: "Shoulda' gone with Android, buffone. You callin' for help with that LRGP fiasco again?"

Dany: "Geeze what a bucket of worms this has turned into. I should never have left Donkeyville."

Stefano: "Easy with the mule similes, dude. We're a little sensitive about that around here."

Dany: "Sorry. Been spending too much time reading the TLF postings. Bunch of ruffians, that lot."

Stefano: "You need to get out more Dany boy. What can I do for you?"

Dany: "Well, I was wondering if Scuderia could possibly spot me about ten billion lira this week. You know, for old time's sake. I'm a bit short at the moment, and I need to buy out Renault and fast."

Stefano: "Ha! A bit stretched, eh? Heard you're about one farthing away from cancelling your frequent flier miles to LA. Is it true that you've taken up break dancing? Tell Swizz I said 'hi,' and that if he waits long enough that One Man Band Man will become a cult classic........Not! Montezemolo's scared shitless that he's liable to show up at his door next."

Dany: "Montezemolo is a troglodyte. He needs to look more towards the future instead of making huge profits on obscenely priced cars. Er....come to think of it, maybe he's on to something there. Listen, I gotta' go. I have to be back in court this afternoon. I'm still 'in the Hunt' so to speak."

Stefano: "Hey, better you than me. I'll get back to you on the loan request. But first we have to bail out Greece. Seems we're the only solvent entity within ferry distance, and they've been hard pressed to find enough drachmas to pay off their fuelers to fund more flights to see Merkel in Germany. Anyway, she's away at the moment, in China. Something about investing in a restaurant chain in Bejing with a very unique menu. Ciao."

phone goes dead......


Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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So unlike the BBC commentary of the last grand prix where they said "oh the Mercedes McLaren is trying to overtake the Mercedes Mercedes" Both using Mercedes

Did they really say that!? commentators over here keep referring to one team as LRGP or Renault and the other is Team Lotus!

A shame! a real shame for Norfolk they are set to loose about 150 high paying jobs which for sure generated quite a few induced jobs in the area!

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What surprises me is how all the conversation seems to be about the costs of sponsoring an f1 team without any discussion on the benefit. As such it comes across as something companies do for vanity reasons, not because it makes business logic.

Arguably these events can sell more than a whole host of trade shows.

DB from his time with Red Bull and Ferrari will certainly know how both these companies account for the costs & benefits of their sponsorships.

Andrew I disagree. The companies that work best in F1 are those for whom its a primary source of income or are highly cash rich and making substantial profits to afford the drain on resources. Ferrari is an exception to the rule. In terms of car companies, and I feel I can speak of these having worked for some of those who have failed in F1, I 100% believe the costs out weigh the promotional and marketing aspects for car manufacturers.

For example, Protons final years accounts show a huge drain from Lotus, though the P&L figures aren't clear (possibly on purpose not to scare any funders) it looks like Lotus made record losses in the Upper £20 millions. £10 million of that was spend on Renault F1 and I can guarantee you that the company didn't sell anywhere near that figure because it was in F1...infact I would challenge any company to prove it sells a car directly because its in F1.

Where income can be generated is in Engineering developments etc. But as long as the team is still called "Renault" the results of the marketing go to them.

I 100% believe that as it stands, this is an ego thing and a way for DB to get his name in F1 (Possibly to stick 2 fingers up at Ferrari and Red Bull). However, it's also an opening to let Lotus possibly buy a bigger stake in F1 and possibly eventually return as a Chassis maker.

For me thats the best way to realise any marketing and promotional aspirations.

That doesn't mean I think its a good idea. Even successful OEM's have struggled and found F1 too much of a burden. What happens when a company shedding millions in losses goes into it? How long before funders say "Start spending your money on the core of your business, or else!!".

Thats my worry.

Did they really say that!? commentators over here keep referring to one team as LRGP or Renault and the other is Team Lotus!

They do in the UK as well. Renault is Renault and Team Lotus is Team Lotus. Though I noticed for the first time this weekend that just once Martin Brundell called it Lotus Renault.


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I have heard the commentators say Lotus Renault a few times in OZ as well.


All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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I think Kimbers that we're going to have to agree to disagree on this one.

For example, Protons final years accounts show a huge drain from Lotus, though the P&L figures aren't clear (possibly on purpose not to scare any funders) it looks like Lotus made record losses in the Upper £20 millions. £10 million of that was spend on Renault F1 and I can guarantee you that the company didn't sell anywhere near that figure because it was in F1...infact I would challenge any company to prove it sells a car directly because its in F1.

I think you are confusing profit / loss with the balance sheet. For a F1 sponsorship you would expect some increase in sales (which will be hard, but not impossible to estimate) and an increase in brand awareness which would sit as an intangible asset in the balance sheet. There would also be a lag-effect and few would enter these types of sponsorships expecting pay-back in 1 year.

Where income can be generated is in Engineering developments etc. But as long as the team is still called "Renault" the results of the marketing go to them.

If you are making money from Engineering developments this would relate to ownership / use of IP. There is nothing to state that IP ownership and team name need to be the same. Most F1 sponsorship contracts will have some form of in-kind and IP agreement (e.g. a technology firm probably has IP ownership as part of a sponsorship). If you are suggesting that the name is important then this fits into a branding area and therefore relates to my earlier point about intangible assets.

I agree that the end-game should be to own the team, not least to get rid of the lasting damage that Renault created in the eyes of sponsors after Singapore.

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I believe we will agree to disagree Andrew :) I have seen Toyota and Honda pour in £200 million a year (thats what they stated, I know that Toyota actually spent £400 mill in one year) above their sponsorship money i.e. their own investment, and get no where. So many smaller OEMs have utterly failed (classic example is Spyker, Alfa, Lamborghini).

I think those at the top have a "Something special". Not only money but organisation and the staff driving it all forward. Those that have failed have invariably put in money but many have been forced to retire due to the strain it puts on the parent company.

Many people have said to me that Proton is owned by the Malaysian Govt. Which is partly wrong. Its a Quoted Stock on the Bursa Malaysia. Though the single largest owner is govt owned, the majority of it is Private investment owned, Kazhana Nasional (Govt owned) own about 43% I believe (according to the internet), though this may have risen as private investment decreased due to its stock being classified "Sell" due to poor results.

My whole point is that if the F1 program starts eating even more into funding there will be pressures from all sorts of areas that will limit how much they can spend to get to the top. Likewise I don't see anyone accepting any F1 involvement with a midfield to rear end runner.

I may be wrong but I think the company is better served getting finances and new models straight before going into F1 and don't get me wrong I want to see Lotus in F1 again!!


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Some teams make a profit from their F1 operations, in fact that the reason most teams on the grid are there.


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

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Yes Bibs, as an example.

Year on year Williams Grand Prix Holdings PLC had revenues fall 15.95% from 108.31m to 91.03m, though the company grew net income 33.18% from 4.52m to 6.03m
(Source FT MarketsData. Currently valued at EUR160m.

Of course if you stick to sponsorship it's much easier to control the money you spend.

It's true that many manufacturers have failed to make it work. I personally think that buying into a good team and keeping it at arms length is a decent strategy. I would hope that Lotus could eventually share knowledge / experience / high-value capital equipment between their various motorsport / non motorsport engineering activities.

As I've mentioned on here in the past, the current Lotus 'plan' seems to me to be all about building equity value rather than cash-flow. I see a case-study 'how to rebuild a heritage brand' - a typical approach that would be used by a private equity operation. This is not supposed to imply anything about my views on future products. Private Equity firms like Stellican who specialize in this approach have often led to much better products. (Stellican own Indian motorcycles & Chris Craft and Riva boats). If Proton's idea is to build value in the business pre-sale (either full or partial) then something like F1 sponsorship could make sense. I would be highly surprised if Lotus didn't attract all the high-profile execs on a promise of equity / mid-term exit.

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Indeed. It was always my thoughts that the amount of smoke and mirrors and "brand building" (to put it nicely) pertains to its value either floating on the stock exchange or as a sale to a group of investors.


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