Wheels (Australia)

Mac’s big bill


THE SUDDEN COVID-INFLICTED slump in McLaren sales last year nearly bankrupted the company. McLaren relied on sales revenue to pay for parts used to build cars the previous quarter, and even though it raised A$535 million in March, by May insiders worried McLaren would run out of cash in mid-July. A loan of A$267m backed by the Bahrain sovereign investment fund that owns 58 percent of the company solved that short-term crisis. But

McLaren, now sitting on about $1 billion of debt, is not out of the woods yet.

Last year’s sale of a share in the McLaren F1 team to US company MSP Sports Capital will net A$330m over three years. Meanwhile, McLaren Automotive boss Mike Flewitt is actively chasing a further A$600-$900m from investors, and moves are underway to sell and lease back McLaren’s iconic Woking headquarte­rs, a move that may unlock a further A$350m.

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