RSE Ventures is teaming up with Qatar to buy a 35.5% stake in the holding company that owns Formula One in a $7bn-$8bn deal, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters.
RSE, which owns US football team Miami Dolphins, is looking to acquire the stake from buyout group CVC Capital Partners Ltd.
CVC owns a 35.5% stake in F1, which is headed by billionaire Bernie Ecclestone.
Dieter Hahn, chairman of the supervisory board of German sports marketing media group Constantin Medien is also involved with the investment consortium, the source said, although Reuters could not immediately verify what his precise involvement was.
“The key to unlocking this deal is that under Bernie, F1 doesn’t do much TV rights marketing. Hahn will help with that,” the source said.
Goldman Sachs is working with CVC on the deal, while JP Morgan is working with the buyside investors.
CVC did not immediately respond to requests for comment. A spokesman for Dieter Hahn could not be reached for comment. JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs also had no immediate comment.
The deal, reportedly being backed by Qatar Sports Investments (QSI), which also owns the Paris Saint-Germain football club, could see the sport finally break into the US market.
QSI is believed to want to ultimately buy the whole of F1, according to people close to the talks, the Financial Times newspaper said.
Qatar has shown keen interest in hosting a Formula One race and talks are said to be in an advanced stage.