What’s in a name? Why some of the F1 teams may be renaming themselves

September 6, 2010

Force India could be one of the teams looking for a name change. Photo: Jenkins, Pasternak & West

The commercial rights for Formula 1 are held by Bernie Ecclestone’s Formula One Group which is owned by CVC Capital Partners. I’ve heard on the grapevine that the new Concorde Agreement (the one that all the teams are currently focusing on to carry on from 2013) is likely to stipulate that any team using the terms Formula 1 or F1 in their name will be required to pay a licensing fee to FOG. A quick review of the full names of the teams on the official F1 site shows that this could effect ‘Mercedes GP Petronas F1 Team’, ‘Renault F1 Team’, ‘Force India F1 Team’, ‘BMW (yes it’s still there!) Sauber F1 Team’ and ‘HRT F1 Team’. The implications are that if a team wants to avoid paying significant sums to FOG then they may need to come up with a new name before 2013.

All of this suggests (as previously blogged) a tightening up of FOG’s position on the rights to use and promote the F1 brand and use the paddock area, for example the team’s having to remove their tractor units from the paddock if they had decals of brands which had not paid to be advertised in the paddock. Perhaps I need to look at renaming my blog?

2 Responses to “What’s in a name? Why some of the F1 teams may be renaming themselves”

  1. jackie Says:

    Wonder how many blogs have F1 in the title, surely Bernie couldn’t go after them all? I’m sure that would set some sort of legal president if a specific letter and number were out of bounds for domain names.

    I’m sure it will be enforceable for the teams though

    • Mark Says:

      Hi Jackie, My comment was a bit tongue-in-cheek (I hope!) I think it will only be a problem if you’re using the name for commercial ends – ie you are generating revenue, if, like me, your blog is just to share thoughts and opinions then it shouldn’t be a problem.

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