Formula 1 Owners Liberty Media Worth $17.2 Billion Become the Largest Sports & Entertainment Group

Ahead of the start of 2022 Formula 1 season, get to know all about Liberty media's acquisition and it's success story.

2022 F1 season
2022 F1 season

The FIA Formula 1 World Championship is promoted by the Formula One Group of companies and are also responsible in exercising the sport’s commercial rights. The Group was previously owned by CVC Capital Partners who announced acquiring 25% and 48% shares of Bambino and Bayerische Landesbank in SLEC in the year 2005. In late 2016, Liberty media came into picture with the agreement of obtaining interest in the Formula One Group for £3.3 billion ($4.4 billion).

Stefano Domenicali PA - FirstSportz
Stefano Domenicali

This deal between the Formula One Group and Liberty media was completely approved by the regulators on 23rd January, 2017. Stefano Domenicali, ex-Ferrari team boss was announced as the new chief executive of the Formula One Group in September 2020, Chase Carey was the Chief Executive of the group.

Over the years, Sports empires have been immensely growing as the owners seek more expansion portfolios and the team valuation rises. Among the pack, Liberty Media seems to be leading according the Forbes magazine tabulation $17.2 billion valuation. Apart from ownership of Formula 1, the liberty media group also includes, the Atlanta Braves and has stakes in Meyer Shank Racing, Kroenke Arena Company and Drone Racing League.

10 years ago, when CVC Capital Partners bought the commercial rights of f1, the private entity’s management regarding F1 had drawn harsh criticism with the firm being blamed for prioritizing returns which were maximized before selling it at premium from any investment over developing the sport and setting it up for future growth. Later on, Liberty media company had acquired 18.17 per cent of F1 and was given the ownership in hopes of Liberty providing security to Formula 1 and its teams.

Liberty Media’s growth:

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Liberty media has shown positive, green figures for the year 2021 with viewership growth of 13 percent along with 97 per cent more viewing of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix with a spectacle provided by Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix which no one in the world wanted to miss out on.

These figures were exclusively of people watching the race live, on their television screens. The success rate of digital era in f1 has grown immensely with total figures of whooping 135 percent and 173 percent of viewing of f1 videos solely.

Liberty media’s strategy of making F1 available on all the platforms has helped boost its popularity and the media company seems to have accurately catered to a new generation of viewers with its standing today.

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