McLaren is considering securing loans against its factory and a number of historic cars it has in its collection in order to protect itself during the COVID-19 pandemic.
A number of past McLaren cars from Formula 1, IndyCar and Can-Am are on display on the boulevard at the McLaren Technology Centre in Woking (pictured above), with many more in storage. As the first F1 team to announce it was furloughing staff to save money, McLaren is also now analyzing whether to secure loans against both the factory building and its historic chassis until racing can resume and income increases.
“Like many other British businesses McLaren has been severely affected by the current pandemic and is therefore exploring a variety of different funding options to help navigate these short-term business interruptions,” a McLaren spokesman said.
The push for funds is due to McLaren’s supercar sales having taken a major hit due to the current crisis, on top of the lack of revenue for the F1 team with the opening 10 rounds of the season not taking place.
Sky News reports the company could raise over $350 million by borrowing against the McLaren Technology Centre and cars previously driven by the likes of Ayrton Senna, Bruce McLaren, Alain Prost and Niki Lauda. RACER understands this is just one route being investigated as McLaren seeks short-term funding and financial relief during the current situation, and is viewed as a temporary measure.
British companies are able to request further financial support from the government, but McLaren’s application for £150 million ($182m) failed as it was informed it had not yet investigated other ways of raising funds thoroughly enough.
F1 is targeting a season restart date of July 5 in Austria, and hopes to open with two races at both the Red Bull Ring and Silverstone before potentially heading to Hungary and then a tripleheader beginning in either Spain or Germany, followed by Belgium and Italy in late August and early September. On Friday, local government confirmed the Belgian Grand Prix can take place behind closed doors.