Ron Dennis, the former boss of the McLaren automotive group, is to sever ties with the Formula One company after 37 years.
The announcement of a deal with fellow shareholders confirmed an exclusive Sky News report that Mr Dennis was to sell his stake for £275m.
Mr Dennis is offloading stakes in McLaren Technology Group, which controls the F1 team, and McLaren Automotive Limited, the road car manufacturer.
The deal unites the two arms of the company under a single structure and puts its worth at more than £2bn, making it one of Britain’s most valuable private companies.
Bahrain’s sovereign wealth fund Mumtalakat and Mr Dennis’s long-term business partner Mansour Ojjeh will remain the main shareholders.
Mr Dennis, who turned 70 earlier this month, was put on gardening leave from his role as chief executive of MTG in December following an acrimonious legal battle with his fellow shareholders.
Since stepping down as MTG’s chairman and chief executive, Mr Dennis has joined the Ministry of Defence’s Innovation Advisory Panel, which is tasked with applying new technologies to defence activities.
He remained on the board of MTG but is now also relinquishing that role.
Mr Dennis spent more than 35 years as the boss of McLaren, enjoying huge success on the track with drivers including Lewis Hamilton, who is now part of the Mercedes F1 team.
He also became one of Britain’s best known businessmen, expanding McLaren’s technology ventures into a wide range of other industries through lucrative commercial partnerships.
However, the recent performance of the F1 team cast a shadow over the entire McLaren brand, and relations between Mr Dennis and his fellow investors soured badly.
“I am disappointed that the representatives of TAG [Mr Ojjeh] and Mumtalakat… have forced through this decision to place me on gardening leave, despite the strong warnings from the rest of the management team about the potential consequences of their actions on the business,” Mr Dennis said in a statement last December.
“Ultimately it has become clear to me through this process that neither TAG nor Mumtalakat share my vision for McLaren and its true growth potential.”
He adopted a more conciliatory tone in a statement issue by McLaren confirming his exit on Friday, saying: “It represents a fitting end to my time at McLaren.”
The F1 team has won a string of drivers’ and constructors’ championships, although a recent collaboration with engine-maker Honda has failed to produce competitive results.
This year has turned into another bitterly disappointing season for the F1 team, which boasts former World Champion Fernando Alonso among its drivers.
Although its F1 team’s performance has been lacklustre in recent years, its road-car business is expected to produce a record 4,000 vehicles this year.
Its Applied Technologies Group has also led to partnerships with companies such as GlaxoSmithKline and KPMG.
Source: SKY News