Vijay Mallya's Force India faces legal action over pink sponsorship deal, claims report

The Vijay Mallya-owned Force India Formula 1 team has gone pink following their latest sponsorship deal with an Austrian water technology company, with the team owner himself expressing happiness at the change.

However, the deal has landed Force India in a sticky situation, with an agency reportedly suing the team for not awarding them the contract, which would have fetched them €10 million in commission.

Force India's Sergio Perez's car sporting the new pink livery in the British Grand Prix. Reuters

Force India's Sergio Perez's car sporting the new pink livery in the British Grand Prix. Reuters

"It is clear from the complaint that while there was no contract signed by Force India, there was a written commitment," is what German newspaper Bild am Sonntag wrote in a report, which named AMP Advisory and Management Partners as the claimant in the lawsuit in a British financial court.

Force India, which had finished fourth in the constructor's championship last season — its best result ever — had unveiled a pink livery earlier in March following a sponsorship deal between the racing team and Austria-based company BWT, with the deal fetching the team an estimated €12 to 15 million ($14 to 18 million).

"Changing the colour of our cars is an indication of the strength of this new partnership and a real statement of intent from BWT.

"The arrival of BWT in Formula 1 is huge news and represents one of the most significant partnerships in our 10-year history," is what team owner Mallya had said according to a report on Hindustan Times.

The change of colour however, attracted mixed response from fans, and the likes of Nico Hulkenburg and Esteban Ocon took to Twitter to take a jibe at the new colour.

Hulkenberg, who moved to Renault from Force India in October last year, made a tongue-in-cheek comment on his official Twitter account, saying, "Now you finally understand why I left Force India."

Ocon, who currently races for the Silverstone-based team, compared the colour change to 'The Pink Panther'.

Published Date: Jul 18, 2017 07:51 AM | Updated Date: Jul 18, 2017 07:51 AM

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