Wolff to sell Williams stake to avoid Mercedes conflict

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Mercedes executive director Toto Wolff has decided not to continue holding stakes in two Formula One teams

Wolff retained a 16 percent stake in Williams after leaving the team to work for Mercedes, whose F1 team he holds a 30 percent shareholding in.

During the Chinese Grand Prix Wolff told Reuters he has advised Mercedes he will sell his stake in Williams to avoid any potential conflict of interest.

However he continued to insist the scope for a conflict was minimal: “Even if operationally it is not a conflict, because [at Mercedes] I am a director and I’m not [at Williams] any more, it doesn’t give a good light.”

Wolff added he wanted to find a “responsible” buyer, preferably a sponsor: “I owe Frank [Williams] and the family and the whole team there to do it with responsibility. I cannot just go into the market and say ‘who wants to buy these shares?’ and that’s it.”

Wolff was appointed executive director at Williams in July last year but moved to Mercedes six months later. His wife Susie remains a test and development driver at Williams.

In March Wolff took over from Nick Fry as executive director of Mercedes’ F1 team.