Mercedes Formula One chief Toto Wolff has taken a stake in British sports car maker Aston Martin, whose government chairman Lawrence Stroll runs the Racing Level F1 team, based on company filings.
A Mercedes F1 spokesman stated Wolff’s move was purely an investment on the Austrian’s part and would be diluted by a rights issue Monday from 4.77% to less than 1%.
Swiss billionaire Ernesto Bertarelli has purchased a 3.38% stake, which shall be similarly diluted.
Wolff previously had a 16% shareholding in former champions Williams but sold that after he joined the Mercedes team, where he serves as chief and owns 30%.
Canadian billionaire Stroll, whose son Lance drives for Racing Point alongside Mexican Sergio Perez, is close to Wolff. The Silverstone-based team — to be renamed Aston Martin in 2021 — use Mercedes engines and gearboxes.
Wolff’s future at Mercedes has been the subject of some media speculation, with the 48-year-old linked variously to senior management positions with Liberty Media-owned Formula One and at Aston Martin.
His Aston Martin stocks were purchased from Yew Tree Overseas Limited, a car controlled by Stroll, who acquired an almost 25% holding in Aston Martin with a consortium of investors.
Mercedes have won the previous six Formula One drivers’ and constructors’ titles but has six times world champion, Lewis Hamilton, out of contract at the end of this year’s season, which has yet to start out as a result of COVID-19 pandemic.