Formula One Owners Under Investigation for Bribery

August 31, 2011

CVC Capital Partners Ltd., a U.K. private-equity company, have had their investors plan to question the firm over bribery allegations made in connection with its purchase of the Formula One car-racing series, the Financial Times reported.

CVC, which holds its annual investors meeting on Sept. 14, bought Formula One from banks including Germany’s Bayerische Landesbank for $1.7 billion in 2005. Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone has taken the main focus from the Munich prosecutors over payments he made to Gerhard Gribkowsky, a former BayernLB banker who was arrested in January and has been in custody, the newspaper said.

Ecclestone hasn’t been charged with any offense, the FT said.

CVC, which has never been accused of any wrongdoing and said in January that it had no knowledge of any payments made to Gribkowsky, declined to comment on the prospect of questioning by investors, the newspaper reported.