100 Most Influential People in Formula 1

2. Donald Mackenzie | Co-Chairman, CVC Capital Partners

Donald Mackenzie

Position last year: 7
Age: 59
Bio: A key player in the future of the sport as the voice of the major shareholders (Formula One Group).
Google searches (approximate stats during the past 12 months): 0.5 million

A key player in the future of the sport as the voice of the major shareholders (Formula One Group). The Financial Times calls him “one of European private equity’s most powerful executives” and as a Managing Partner and a co-founder of CVC Capital Partners Group, Donald MacKenzie exists as one of the most powerful men in Formula 1. Qualifying as a Chartered Accountant, Mackenzie holds an LLB from the Unversity of Dundee, he began his career at 3i, but left to join the precursor to CVC, Citicorp in 1988. Under his guidance the group has developed an impressive reputation, financing 52 companies globally with combined annual sales of almost €90 billion. Upon taking a controlling stake in Formula One Group from Bayerische Landesbank and Bambino during 2006, CVC established Alpha Prema, of which Mackenzie is a board member, to oversee the direction of the Formula 1 assets.

Mackenzie is one of the richest men in the City of London. His connection and influence amongst many of the world’s most powerful business leaders has transformed F1 into a reputable business model that will have attracted much of its recent investment and interest in the five years since CVC became a controlling partner in the sport. His influence and expertise is so highly regarded that he has been called upon by peers, to assist in the development of the Global Buyout Committee; a more structured and coordinated set of guidelines for the controversial investment industry.
His role in the business of Formula 1 can be seen as one of a mediator, coming out in support of Chief Executive Bernie Ecclestone following his ill-advised remarks about Hitler to the Times of London. It’s likely that he’s the financial muscle behind the sport, but he knows that only one person has the influence and respect to run Formula 1 with the success it enjoys today. Though he has rushed to the aide of his ringmaster on previous occasion, as things stand, Mackenzie will be responsible for appointing a successor to Ecclestone to lead the Formula 1 circus when the time comes. In September 2011 CVC appointed Mackenzie as Chairman of the F1 holding company Delta Topco. CVC owns over 60% of Topco and has board control.

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