Cognizant becomes title sponsor of Aston Martin F1 team

15 January 2021 4 min. read
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IT consulting giant Cognizant has entered into a multi-year partnership with Aston Martin’s new Formula One team. The news came as the historical British automotive brand announced a surprise return to the Grand Prix starting grid, following six decades away from the sport.

Aston Martin is a British independent manufacturer of luxury sports cars and grand tourers. The iconic automotive brand was founded in 1913 by Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford – but in all its 107 years of operations, the company has only been involved in to seasons of Formula One racing. During two somewhat ignominious years between 1959 and 1960, the brand’s first open-wheel racing car – the DBR4 – failed to accrue a single point in either campaign.

Now, all that could be about to change, however, with the news that Aston Martin is returning to Formula One for the 2021 Formula One World Championship – following a commercial rebranding of Racing Point UK's Racing Point F1 Team. The result of a funding investment from Racing Point owner Lawrence Stroll, the move will see Sergio Pérez leaving the team, to be replaced by four-time World Drivers' Champion Sebastian Vettel, alongside other driver Lance Stroll – son of the team’s owner.

Cognizant becomes title sponsor of Aston Martin F1 team

Vettel said of his appointment, "There's so much for me to discover over the next few months and I'm incredibly determined to help make this team even more successful. Before we know it, we will be at the first race, seeing this famous name back where it belongs. I'm proud to be part of this journey."

With the former Ferrari driver behind the wheel of a car now bathed in historic British Racing Green, the revived Aston Martin F1 brand will be well-positioned to improve on the company’s last performance in the Championships. At the same time, the team has also garnered a major sponsorship opportunity from IT consulting firm Cognizant, which will serve as title-sponsor through the coming season.

Brian Humphries, CEO of Cognizant, stated, "We are absolutely thrilled to be the title partner of Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team. Our global brands have much in common. We are both innovative, forward-looking firms that like to move fast, stay focused, and lead from the front. We understand the incredible power of today's advanced technologies and how to harness them to engineer unique customer experiences. We're excited by the promise of this deep and mutually beneficial partnership."

The backing of Cognizant, a Fortune 500 company that employs more than 300,000 people worldwide, bodes well for the team, helping to raise its profile from its new factory in British motorsport’s spiritual home of Silverstone. The sponsorship deal does not only include financial gains, either. As is the case with Cognizant’s involvement in a number of other sporting engagements – including its sponsorship of English football’s historic FA Cup – the news should also be a welcome boost for the vital IT systems of the team.

Otmar Szafnauer, the CEO and Team Principal of Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team, explained, "We're just two months away from the start of the season, so it's fantastic to celebrate the new era of Aston Martin in Formula One by welcoming Cognizant as our title partner. Innovation and technology are central pillars for any Formula One team, and this long-term partnership is more than just a branding exercise. With a new factory already under construction, Cognizant's expertise and resources will add value in all areas of our IT operations and make a valuable contribution to our performance on-track."

The return of Aston Martin to Formula One after more than 60 years away is a “landmark moment in the history of the sport,” according to Team Chairman Stroll. He also was keen to reiterate that partnering with Cognizant promised to offer up new opportunities for the team in its maiden Championship.

Stroll added, "Everyone knows what Aston Martin stands for, but the Formula One team will allow us to take the essence of the brand to new places, building on the strong foundations laid by the previous iterations of the team. I'm hugely proud that we can start this new chapter with the support of Cognizant. In today's world, as the digital revolution continues, I can't think of a more suitable or valuable partner to work with us as we strive to make Aston Martin one of the greatest teams in the sport."