F1 teams are payment slowcoaches

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12 January 2011 | Lindsay Clark

Only two Formula 1 racing teams pay suppliers on time, business research has shown.

The UK’s Red Bull Racing and Italy’s Scuderia Toro Rosso, both owned by drinks firm Red Bull, managed to pay suppliers when bills were due.

Red Bull, which won the constructors’ championship last season, improved its payment to suppliers by an average of one day over the past six months, the research found.

Despite having budgets running into hundreds of millions of pounds, teams paid their suppliers on average 28 days after invoices became due. The worst offender was Norfolk-based Lotus, which joined F1 last year and paid its bills 180 days late. Lotus could not be contacted for comment.

According to the research, Renault had the biggest increase in late payment, with its bills settled on average 14 days late, up from five days. Virgin Racing, supported by Sir Richard Branson, paid eight days late.

Britain's Williams team had the second-biggest increase in late payment while even German giants Mercedes and Italian legend Ferrari settled late.

However, now paying an average of 15 days late Ferrari has at least improved its position and performance. In April, the study found the team paid its bills on average 16 days late, making it the worst performer at the time.

The study was carried out by Bisnode, a credit risk service owned by Dun and Bradstreet.

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