Key staff changes hit V8 Supercars stakeholder

Gordon Lomas

Friday 10th January, 2014 - 4:00am

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Key staff changes at Archer Capital

Key staff changes at Archer Capital

A second key figure, instrumental in the 2011 buyout of V8 Supercars, has parted company the sport’s major shareholder, Archer Capital, within a month.

Andrew Joyce, who worked on the $300million-plus acquisition of V8 Supercars, left the Sydney-based private equity firm this week.

The departure comes just three weeks after Archer Capital partner Andrew Gray announced to staff that his seven-year term with the company had come to an end.

It leaves Brad Lancken as the only surviving employee at Archer who was involved in the original purchase of V8 Supercars where the equity firm acquired a 65 percent stake in the sport.

Gray had not been actively involved in the V8 Supercars business since the end of May last year when he was axed in favour of Archer partner Rishabh Mehrotra.

The removal of two of the three people involved in the acquisition of the V8 business is seen as an interesting development from a company which prides itself on successful asset acquisitions.

It is believed that Archer has received far less return on its investment in V8 Supercars than first projected, after paying top dollar at the height of the market almost three years ago.

Some V8 Supercar team owners, which own a greatly reduced 35 percent stake in their own business, are greatly concerned about their own returns which have been decimated since Archer’s 2011 buyout.

Joyce had been actively involved in the V8 business and leaves Archer after his 2010 appointment.

Archer’s investment in the V8 Supercars business could be seen as a rare misfire for a company which has a strong track record in taking control of robust assets.

V8 Supercars, who have recently vacated their Nerang headquarters to divide their operations between Sydney and a greatly-reduced office space in Southport on the Gold Coast, did not comment on the staff changes at Archer other than to say; ‘it has no effect on the business of V8 Supercars’.

The developments within V8 Supercars’ ownership structure come as the category announced its fresh $241million media rights deal just a week before Christmas.

After incumbent broadcaster Channel 7’s contract finishes at the end of 2014, V8 Supercars has completed a six-year deal to show the series on Fox Sports and the Ten Network from 2015.

The exact nature of how the telecasts will be carved up between free-to-air and pay TV is yet to be fully divulged.

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