Thursday, 22 September 2016
McLaren denies Apple takeover bid
Formula 1 team owner McLaren has played down a report that Apple has made a buyout or investment approach for the supercar maker.
The Financial Times newspaper has reported that talks had started several months ago.
But a McLaren spokesman said: "We can confirm that McLaren is not in discussion with Apple in respect of any potential investment."
However, the firm "regularly" has "confidential conversations with a wide range of parties", he added.
The that a potential deal would see Apple pay up to £1.5billion (US$2 billion) for McLaren, or make an investment for part of it, citing sources it said had been briefed on negotiations.
It said that Apple was interested in accelerating its own car projects.
According to the UK broadcaster BBC, McLaren had been in talks with Apple over its rumoured Apple car, but those talks had not come to fruition.
The BBC comments that “It hard to see why the technology giant would want control of a Formula 1 team, or what interest it might have in the supercars built by McLaren Automotive. A more likely target is McLaren Applied Technologies, a sister business to the other two.”
The BBC adds: “Part of what it does is data analytics. During Formula 1 races, McLaren uses computers to model pretty much any scenario that might occur, so that the team can adapt its strategy on a continuous basis. This kind of modelling can be used in other scenarios too - for example to predict how traffic will flow through a typical city centre, and how problems in one area might have knock-on effects miles away.”
“It also develops advanced materials - lightweight carbon composites and complex alloys, which are used by the automotive business. And it's recognised as a leader in the development of simulators, which can model and predict vehicle behaviour.”
According to the BBC: “It's an open secret in Silicon Valley that Apple is developing a car; it's widely believed the company has ambitions to become a leader in the market for driverless vehicles.”
“Advanced materials, predictive analytics and expertise in simulating vehicle behaviour... you can start to see why the Californian giant might be interested in a relatively small business based in Woking,” concludes the BBC.