London: The German media group Constantin Medien, once a part-owner of F1, has filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against Bernie Ecclestone and several other defendants, the Financial Times reported on Friday.
Constantin alleges in its London lawsuit that Ecclestone and his business partners undervalued the racing series when it was sold by banks for $1.7 billion (1 billion pounds) to private equity group CVC Capital Partners, in late 2005, the newspaper said citing two people familiar with the claim.
In the lawsuit filed at the London High Court in July, Constantin alleged that the defendants, by selling one of the world`s most popular racing championships too cheaply, thereby deprived the German group of its share of profits from a sale.
The case presents Ecclestone, the billionaire Formula 1 boss, with another legal challenge over the controversial sale of the racing series almost six years ago.
The dispute has its roots in an agreement that was made at the time of the collapse of the German Kirch media empire, of which Constantin -- then named EM.TV- had been part of.
Constantin had given its minority stake in F1 as collateral to the banks in exchange for an agreement guaranteeing it a share of profits in a future sale of the racing series.