The departure of Ron Dennis of McLaren, after more than three decades of absolute control, is still shaking the structure of a team that seeks to usher in a new era to retrieve the path to winning, starting with a change of stockings in the name of the car, and continuing with the gradual departure of the people of confidence of Dennis during all these years. The last name in to find the doors of Woking path of a new professional occupation is Ekrem Sami, the main responsible of marketing of McLaren.
Sami has been one of the strong men of Dennis practically from the first years of the involvement of his Project Four, being a key figure to retain the sponsorship of Marlboro until 1996, and the subsequent agreements with West and Vodafone. The steering steam introduced in December his resignation as head of McLaren Marketing, and your final output will be formalised at the end of march, occupying his place John Riches. Sami has stated that it is their own decision, and that will continue to work on other projects:
“I don’t mind admitting that it is a bit strange to announce that abandonment McLaren, the company to which I have devoted almost my entire professional life, but now is the right time. Anyway, I will continue to work on projects in which I am already committed to. In the last 35 years, I have worked with some people really, really brilliant, and I want to thank you all. Our successes have been a team effort in the most fundamental way. In regards to my plans, I’m looking forward to expand my professional perspective in the broad field of sports and entertainment, after having been so immersed in the weird and wonderful world of the Formula 1“.
During their years of close relationship with the sporting activities of McLaren, Zak Brown had the opportunity to try on several occasions with Sami, the one that only has the words complimentary. In her new position as executive director of McLaren, Brawn praises the dedication with which you worked on and for McLaren: “I will Always consider to Ekrem as a man of McLaren, whatever you do in the rest of your professional life. His commitment and work ethic remain unmatched, and I feel privileged to have worked with him for so long, not just recently as a partner at McLaren, but also, for many years, as your close partner, during my time in Just Marketing International. Ekrem and I got together a lot, and I don’t mind admitting that I learned a lot from him. His commitment to the cause of McLaren has never wavered, and would have to search far to find a man who works harder than him“.
But if someone from the current environment of McLaren you can talk about Sami with knowledge of cause, that is Mansour Ojjeh, the director of the executive committee of the team, and with whom he has shared the efforts corporate from the beginning. Ojjeh considers that its work was essential to allow that McLaren would enjoy the financial resources necessary to succeed:
“I Know Ekrem from 34 years ago, and since that time, I recognized in him a mind business first, and an incredible determination to succeed. Those days were stressful, but exciting, and when we started to achieve success in Global mid-and late-80’s with people like Lauda, Prost and Senna, our superpilotos and our brilliant engineers were inevitably almost all the credit. But, behind the spotlight, the commercial work of Ekrem, intelligent, and tenacious, was just as important. it Was he who got with success the valuable business relationships that our opponents wished, and therefore we were able to fund the programs of development that allowed us to win, win and win“.