When the Renault team launched their new F1 car earlier this week, one of the sponsors on the car, alongside Lotus, was Genii Business exchange. Genii Capital is the company which owns 100% of the Renault team and was set up by tech investor Gerard Lopez.
Today it’s been announced that Sir Jackie Stewart has become a partner of Genii Business Exchange and will represent them in building new links with manufacturers and automotive companies.
Lopez’ vision for the F1 team is to use it as a platform to develop his business activities particularly in the automotive and technology sectors. Genii owns major stakes in a large number of companies, from solar and alternative energy companies to in car internet and software businesses.
According to Genii’s statement, “Sir Jackie’s mission will be to reinforce the existing commercial, technological and industrial links between the world of racing and the motor car industry, as well as Genii’s core sectors including new technologies, infotainment and cleantech related industries.”
Since retiring as a three times world champion Stewart has proved adept at integrating himself into global businesses, enjoying 30 year long relationships with Ford and Rolex. In recent years he worked with Royal Bank of Scotland in F1. They have now pulled out of the sport.
In addition to the work he will do behind the scenes on Genii’s behalf, leveraging his relationships with industry, Stewart will also be very useful to Lopez is in his ability to get valuable air time on TV. As his opinion is always sought on every issue in F1 from driver behaviour through to politics he gets a lot of camera time on TV networks around the world. He always has prominent branding on his shirt and this has enormous media value.
Also he joins Bruno Senna as someone whose name gives heritage value the team, giving the Lotus-backed team a greater media clout in its battle over the Lotus name with Tony Fernandes. Stewart never raced a Lotus F1 car in Grands Prix, but he is one of the most famous ex-drivers around.
Lopez and Genii are clearly plotting a powerful media strategy for this season.