Bwin Looks for the Checkered Flag

Published Monday, March 09, 2009 -

Bwin Interactive Entertainment is reported to have provided sponsorship for the newly renamed Brawn GP, F1 racing team.

The Austrian online betting company Bwin has been listed on the Austrian stock exchange since 2000. Founded in 1999 by Manfred Bodner, a US-educated Internet businessman, and Norbert Teufelberger a casino executive with the Austrian national gambling business association. Company chairman, Hannes Androsch, was Austria's Minister of Finance from 1970 to 1981 and Vice-Chancellor of the Republic of Austria between 1976 to 1981. He also held senior positions with the OECD and the International Monetary Fund.

Online gambling remains problematical in legal terms in many countries. Yet in others they have seen the need and have started to issue licenses. This would explain the many delays with Honda agreeing to sell the team.

Bwin Interactive Entertainment is gradually building up a number of licenses in different markets. Since 2006 the company has been heavily involved in sponsorships in soccer, beginning with AC Milan and then moving on to AS Monaco and Real Madrid. Bwin offers sports betting, poker, casino games and soft games with most revenue coming from poker and sportsbetting. It also sells licenses which provide operators with marketing, finance and administration, corporate communications, and IT services. Actively looking for business opportunities in Asia, it has opened a subsidiary in Beijing, and in South America. Bwin has already launched operations in Mexico and Argentina.

The sponsorship in F1 makes sense as the company does offer bets on the F1 races. The new Brawn GP team will focus now is on preparations for the first race of the 2009 calendar in Melbourne for the Australian Grand Prix on March 29th. The Brawn GP team began serious track testing with its 2009 car at Barcelona this week and made a positive start on the timesheet. So far all this is speculation but as the wheels turn so does the rumour mill. Bwin is hoping to see it's signature black and orange colours zooming along with a checkered flag.

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