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BMW-Sauber sold to Swiss-based foundation

A Swiss-based foundation, Qadbak Investments, is to buy the BMW Sauber Formula One motor racing team under an agreement signed on Tuesday.

The foundation, representing unnamed Middle East interests, expects to compete next season despite losing a guaranteed slot.

BMW said the sale secured a strong investor for the Swiss-based team. It added that Qadbak's interests would be represented by a Swiss national, Lionel Fischer.

Munich-based BMW put the team up for sale after announcing in July that they were pulling out of the sport at the end of the season. They had bought an 80 per cent stake in Sauber in 2005.

Founder Peter Sauber, who built up the stable at Hinwil near Zurich, owns the other 20 per cent.

The team, whose new name has yet to be revealed, has no guaranteed place on the starting grid for 2010 after the governing International Automobile Federation (FIA) decided on Tuesday to give the place to Malaysian-backed Lotus F1.

However, the FIA said BMW-Sauber had been given 14th place as reserve in case any of the other teams already signed up for 2010 decided to withdraw before the start of the season.

In July, Qadbak bought Notts County, England's oldest football league soccer club. It appointed former England manager Sven-Göran Eriksson as director of football.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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