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SBD Global/November 13, 2012/Finance

Caterham F1 Team Gets $9M Loan From Malaysian Investment Bank CIMB

The Caterham F1 team has "received a financial boost at the eleventh hour," according to Christian Sylt of PITPASS.com. The boost comes "in the form of a £5.7M ($9M) loan from Malaysian investment bank CIMB, which earlier this year was named as one of the backers of the stalled £6.3B ($10B) flotation of F1 itself." It gave the loan to Caterham on Sept. 18, and it is "secured on the team's factory in Leafield," England. This means that "if the team fails to repay the money it could lose its base of operations." The team lies in 11th place and only has two races remaining in which to improve its position, "otherwise its prize money will fall to a fixed fee of £6.3M ($10M) from the estimated £22.9M ($36.6M) it received for finishing 10th last year." Caterham needs to do whatever it can "to regain 10th place from Marussia." For a team like Caterham £5.7M is a lot of money, and it "needs the boost now more than ever before." This season has been Caterham's "worst since it joined F1 in '10 as it has finished 10th for the past two consecutive years, which qualified it for a share of the sport's profits rather than the £6.3M fixed fee" (PITPASS.com, 11/12). MOTORSPORT-TOTAL.com's Roman Wittemeier reported that "about half of all F1 teams have financial difficulties." Even Lotus, the winner of the Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi, "is looking for a new investor that is supposed to take on a majority of the team's debt and put new money in the team." The Caterham team "has spent more than $123M since it joined F1 in '10" (MOTORSPORT-TOTAL.com, 11/12).
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