Rodin Cars founder David Dicker says he’s had tentative talks about purchasing AlphaTauri but that a price tag nearing $1bn is “commercially unviable”.
Rodin was one of three teams whose applications to join Formula 1 as a new constructor was recently rejected by the FIA, which left only Andretti Cadillac being approved to move forward and enter commercial discussions with Formula One Management (FOM). Prospective new teams have been encouraged to invest in existing outfits by the likes of Toto Wolff over the past year, but Australian billionaire Dicker says the numbers don’t add up even as he pursues other avenues into the sport.
“Well, I do have some talks about buying AlphaTauri, but the price is commercially unviable as far as I could understand it,” Dicker told RACER. “You’ve still got to look at these things in commercial terms. And the F1 guys are experts on the motorsport side, but on the business side, I’m not so sure.
“I’ve had a few people talk about this and that, but nothing tremendously concrete. I do have a couple of things that I might get a bit more info in the next week or two about some possibilities there. But the value proposition is weak.
“I do have a project that I’m working on. It’s interesting and exciting, but I can’t talk about it quite yet, because I haven’t quite got it. But let me put it this way: I’m pretty pissed off about not getting into Formula 1, so I’m not just going to go away and sulk.
“That’s just the way that the way I am. I mean, you want to do things, and that’s what life’s about. You just try to do them. And if you can’t do it one way, then look for another way, or other ways, of doing things.”
Dicker, who purchased a majority shareholding in Carlin at the start of this year, says he was also in the frame when Williams was for sale in 2020, as well as having had discussions over the positions of both Sauber and Haas in the past as he continues to analyze other routes to getting involved in Formula 1.
“Well, I would (buy a team) if I thought there was a viable route, but paying $800-900million for (AlphaTauri) would probably not be considered commercially viable. But you know, just got to see if there’s possibilities.
“I made a mistake when Williams was for sale, because I could have bought that pretty easily. And I didn’t read the strategic landscape correctly on that with the way we made the bid, which in hindsight, was obviously a mistake. But there it goes.
“I had a lot of talks with Williams about buying Williams – saw all the numbers and sat through presentations and made them an offer and everything – and I’ve had a few guys talking about other teams from time to time. Mostly Sauber and Haas, which have more or less been on and off the market for years, and could have probably been bought for much lower numbers that made a lot more sense. And like I said, I probably screwed that up.”