Toto Wolff

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Toto Wolff
Toto Wolff 2014.jpg
Wolff in 2014
Born Torger Christian Wolff
(1972-01-12) 12 January 1972 (age 45)
Vienna, Austria
Nationality Austrian
Occupation Executive director of Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team
Net worth CHF350m–400m (Dec 2015)[1]
Predecessor Norbert Haug
Spouse(s) Susie Wolff (m. 2011)

Torger Christian "Toto" Wolff[2] (born January 12, 1972 in Vienna, Austria) is an Austrian investor and former racing driver. He is currently a 30% owner and executive director of Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team and formerly a shareholder of Williams F1.[3][4]

Wolff began his motorsport career in the Austrian Formula Ford Championship and the German Formula Ford Series. He won his category in the 1994 24 Hours Nürburgring and later competed in the FIA GT Championship and Italian GT Championship.

As an investor, Wolff founded Marchfifteen in 1998 and Marchsixteen Investments in 2004, initially focusing on Internet and technology companies. He currently specialises in strategic investments in medium-sized industrial and listed companies, which have included Williams F1 and German HWA AG.[citation needed]

Early life[edit]

Wolff was born on 12 January 1972 in Vienna to a Polish mother and a Romanian father. Wolff was educated in a French school in Vienna despite not coming from a wealthy family. Wolff's father was diagnosed with brain cancer when Wolff was 8 years old. His parents separated following his father's diagnosis. His father died of the disease ten years later.[5]

Motorsport[edit]

Wolff started his motorsport career in 1992 in the Austrian Formula Ford Championship, driving in Austrian and German Formula Ford in 1993 and 1994. In 1994, he won the 24 Hours Nürburgring in his category. In 2002 Wolff finished in sixth place in the N-GT category in the FIA GT Championship and won one race. He switched to the Italian GT Championship in 2003, winning a race in 2004 with Lorenzo Case, while also teaming with Karl Wendlinger in the FIA GT Championship.[6] Wolff was runner up in the Austrian Rally Championship in 2006, and winner of the 24-hour race in Dubai.[7] Wolff has also served as an instructor at the Walter Lechner Racing School and in 2009 became a lap-record holder on the Nürburgring Nordschleife in a Porsche RSR . [8]

Investor[edit]

Wolff founded investment companies Marchfifteen (1998) and Marchsixteen (2004), both of which initially focused on internet and technology company investments.

Since 2003, Wolff has concentrated on strategic investments in medium-sized industrial and listed companies.[9] Investments include the German HWA AG, in which Wolff bought a 49% stake in 2006[10] listing the company on the stock exchange in 2007.[11] The company runs the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters race program for Mercedes Benz, developing F3 engines and the Gullwing Mercedes Benz SLS GT3 racing car.

Other investments include BRR Rallye Racing, one of the largest rally parts dealers in Europe. Wolff is also co-owner of a sports management company with Mika Häkkinen and was involved in the management of racing drivers such as Bruno Spengler, Alexandre Premat and Valtteri Bottas.[12]

Formula One[edit]

In 2009, Wolff bought a share of the Williams Formula One Team and joined the board of directors.[9] In 2012, he was named executive director of WilliamsF1.[10]

In January 2013, Wolff left WilliamsF1 to become an executive director of the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team,[11] with his business partner Rene Berger becoming non-executive director. In addition to joining the team, he also acquired 30% of Mercedes Grand Prix. Wolff took over the co-ordination of all Mercedes-Benz motorsport activities, a responsibility previously held by Norbert Haug. In 2014, Wolff sold 10% of Williams to American businessman Brad Hollinger.[3] On 9 March 2016, Wolff sold his remaining 5% shares in the Williams team.

As co-owner of both WilliamsF1 (where wife Susie worked as a test driver, until November 2015) and Mercedes Grand Prix, Wolff could celebrate among numerous podiums and successes for both teams, a 1–2–3–4 finish at Spielberg, Austria in his 'home race', as well as at Monza, Italy in both Qualifying and Race classifications.[13]

Philanthropy[edit]

Wolff is Vice Chairman of the Mary Bendet Foundation, founded in memory of a school friend who was a role model for an entire generation of friends. Her spirit lives on through the Foundation, which strives to make life better for underprivileged children. Its projects include improving living conditions in day-care centre, dormitories and playgrounds; creating joyful environments such as rehearsal studios; supporting talent by sponsoring scholarships; and inaugurating centres for blind and handicapped children to better prepare them for life in everyday society. [14]

Personal life[edit]

Wolff lives with his wife, the Scottish racer Susie Wolff (née Stoddart) in Ermatingen at Lake Constance in Switzerland.[15] On 11 April 2017, Susie announced on Twitter that she had given birth to their first child, a baby boy named Jack Wolff,[16] the previous day.

Wolff speaks fluent German, English, French, Italian, Spanish, and Polish. He has two children from a previous marriage, Benedict (14) and Rosa (12).[17]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bilanz: Die Neuzugänge unter den 300 reichsten, bilanz.ch, December 2015
  2. ^ Enzinger, Gerald (10 November 2010). "Der Toto-Gewinner". Wiener Post (in German). Styria Media Group. Retrieved 14 December 2010. 
  3. ^ a b "Mercedes boss Toto Wolff sells off shares in Williams". bbc.com. Retrieved 22 June 2017. 
  4. ^ Patnaude, Art (2016-03-09). "Toto Wolff Sells Remaining Stake in Williams F1 Team". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2016-09-07. 
  5. ^ "Toto Wolff: Risk, Innovation, Winning | Finding Mastery". Finding Mastery. 2017-04-26. Retrieved 2017-04-27. 
  6. ^ fiagt.com: Driver Biography: Toto Wolff
  7. ^ 24-series.com: Duller Motorsport wins first 24 hourrace of the Middle-East
  8. ^ https://www.spiegel.de/auto/aktuell/nuerburgring-rekorde-die-zehn-schnellsten-nordschleifen-runden-a-635476-7.thml.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  9. ^ a b Autosport.com: Williams sells stake in team
  10. ^ a b "Williams shareholder Toto Wolff becomes executive director". Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  11. ^ a b "F1: Mercedes AMG Formula 1 team shareholder Toto Wolff embarks on new role". F1SA. 28 January 2013. Retrieved 10 February 2013. 
  12. ^ "The new Bernie? - Paddock Magazine". www.thepaddockmagazine.com. Retrieved 2017-04-27. 
  13. ^ "Lewis Hamilton needs to be more consistent if he is to catch Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg, writes David Coulthard". BBC Sport. 23 June 2014. Retrieved 26 November 2014. 
  14. ^ "Mary Bendet Foundation". marybendetfoundation.com. Retrieved 22 June 2017. 
  15. ^ "Susie Stoddart and Toto Wolff married". Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters. ITR e.V. 17 October 2011. Retrieved 21 October 2011. 
  16. ^ "Susie Wolff on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2017-04-27. 
  17. ^ "Half-Polish, half-Romanian and speaking 6 languages – Breakfast with Toto Wolff".