McLaren announces partnership with British American Tobacco

McLaren Racing has announced a global partnership with British American Tobacco (BAT), focused solely on BAT’s potentially reduced risk products and grounded in technology and innovation.

According to the press release announcing the deal, “the multi-year partnership is centred on accelerating BAT’s transforming agenda, leveraging its portfolio of potentially reduced risk products, aiming to deliver the world’s tobacco and nicotine consumers a better tomorrow”.

“The agreement brings together two companies with a shared interest in technology, innovation and design, as well as a clear desire to deliver significant and meaningful change in their respective industries,” adds the release. “Technology is a core part of the relationship; McLaren Applied Technologies will work with BAT on areas including battery technology and advanced materials. The two companies will share best practice, innovation know-how and mutual experience.

“We welcome BAT to the McLaren team and support their ambition of delivering meaningful and lasting change through innovation,” said Zak Brown. “BAT’s transformation agenda is central to this partnership and we are pleased to share our technical experience and expertise in helping to accelerate this.”

“We’re extremely proud and excited about this new partnership,” added Kingsley Wheaton, Chief Marketing Officer, BAT, “further enabling us to accelerate the pace at which we innovate and transform ourselves. It gives us a truly global platform with which to drive greater resonance of our potentially reduced risk products, including our Vype, Vuse and glo brands. Ultimately, innovation and technology will support us in creating a better tomorrow’ for our consumers worldwide.”

Of course, British American Tobacco is no stranger to F1, having, under the guidance of Craig Pollack, bought the Tyrrell team in 1997 and subsequently entered the sport as British American Racing in 1999.

Over the course of seven seasons it failed to win a single race but in 2004, by now running as BAR, it finished runner-up in the championship to Ferrari.

The team was subsequently sold to Honda which in turn, after several more disappointing seasons sold it to a consortium led by Ross Brawn.

As Brawn GP, the team won the 2009 world championship, its first and only season in F1 before the Briton sold the team to Mercedes.