McLaren's Ron Dennis, one of the biggest names in F1 history, is stepping down from his CEO position after 35 years. Dennis was told on Tuesday he must give up his position as McLaren's chairman and chief executive, reports the BBC.
Dennis, who holds a 25-percent stake in McLaren, attempted to contest the shareholders' decision to put him on so-called "gardening leave" redundancy. Reports say McLaren's other owners, TAG Group CEO Mansour Ojjeh and the Bahrain-based investment fund Mumtalakat, ousted him due to being at odds with Dennis' management style. Ojjeh holds another 25-percent stake in McLaren, and Mumtalakat holds the remaining 50 percent.
According to Dennis, the rest of the management team warned Ojjeh about the possible consequences of removing him from McLaren. As Dennis says, "My management style is the same as it has always been and is one that has enabled McLaren to become an automotive and technology group that has won 20 Formula 1 World Championships and grown into an £850m-a-year business." Due to differences in vision regarding McLaren's future, there was no other option for Dennis than to leave the company.
Dennis will still retain his 25-percent stake in the company and remain on the boards of both McLaren Technology Group and McLaren Automotive. Dennis states he plans to launch a new technology investment fund as soon as his contractual commitments expire; he also pledges to "use his McLaren board seat to protect the interest of the business and its 3,500 employees."
McLaren has failed to win a F1 title after Lewis Hamilton's drivers' championship eight years ago and the latest constructors' title was won in 1998, 18 years ago.