Mercedes F1 chief Toto Wolff sells remaining Williams shares

Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff has severed all ties with Williams by selling the final five per cent of his shares in the Formula 1 team

Mercedes F1 chief Toto Wolff sells remaining Williams shares

In his former role with Williams, Wolff first invested in Williams Grand Prix Holdings [WGPH] in 2009, helping to launch the team on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange two years later.

Since 2013, following his appointment with Mercedes Grand Prix Ltd, and in agreement with Daimler AG, Wolff has been divesting his shares.

In 2014, Wolff sold five per cent of his original 15 per cent holding in WGPH to healthcare entrepreneur Brad Hollinger, followed by a further five per cent to the American in February last year, and now the remaining tranche.

Wolff said: "I am surprised how emotional I am about this day, to be cutting my final business ties to Sir Frank and to the team at Williams.

"Having entered the team from a pure investment perspective, I soon found myself in a much more active role, helping to restructure this great independent Formula 1 team.

"I am proud to have joined the sport with a team of true passionate racers, where we had to make spot-on decisions for the future of the business and its employees.

"I learned some lessons the hard way, but they were all valuable for understanding the industry.

"I will always remember this period with thanks for the lessons I learned from Sir Frank and his team.

"It was a great privilege to be part of the Williams story."

Wolff has no doubt Hollinger, who now owns 15 per cent of WGPH, is the right man to help serve Williams for the long term.

2014: The American putting his faith in Williams

"The plan to sell my stake was a long-term one agreed with Daimler in 2013, but it was always important to find the right investor, who was doing it for the right reasons," added Wolff.

"Brad is that guy: he's a serious businessman with the right long-term perspective about Williams and Formula 1, and a true passion for racing."

Frank Williams added: "Toto has become a great friend of Williams over the past few years and we thank him for his contribution in what has been a time of great transformation for our company since he first invested in 2009.

"He has also done a magnificent job at Mercedes-Benz since taking on the position of head of motorsport in 2013.

"Leading the team to two consecutive drivers' and constructors' championships is a success which should not be undermined.

"Given his role at Mercedes-Benz, a full divestment in Toto's shareholding became inevitable and we thank him for this judiciousness in only selling to a suitable buyer when the time was right.

"In Brad Hollinger, Toto has sold his full shareholding to a highly successful businessman with an immense passion for Formula 1 and our team - he is a great asset."

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