Investors hit the gas as Lewis Hamilton joins Ferrari

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Breaking out the champagne.
Photo: Claudio Crus/AFP via Getty Images (Getty Images)

There was a lot of good news coming out of Maranello, Italy on Thursday morning (Feb. 1). Ferrari told investors that revenue hit a record €6 billion ($6.5 billion) in 2023, with a nearly two-fifths of that ending up profit (another record). Customers are champing at the bit to get behind the wheel of the Purosangue, the company’s first four-door offering.

“2023 will be remembered as a year in which we accomplished many achievements,” CEO Benedetto Vigna said on the Ferrari earnings call. Looking forward, he said that “the vitality of our business is once again confirmed by the order book on current models, which remain[s] strong across all geographies and cover[s] the entire 2025.”

But Ferrari’s reputation is made on the racetrack! (Vigna celebrated the company’s win at the premiere Le Mans 24-hour race before he shouted out its financial results.) And the big news there is that Lewis Hamilton, who won seven straight Formula 1 championships between 2013 and 2021, is joining Scuderia Ferrari’s efforts next year to dethrone Red Bull’s Max Verstappen-driven dominance.

Though the defection didn’t come up during earnings discussions, it’s a major coup. Six of Hamilton’s championships came at rival Mercedes, which mushed Ferrari’s two-driver team into third place last year despite struggling with a car so bad Hamilton came to doubt his talents.

Plus, Ferrari can take its success on the circuit straight to the bank: The company made €572 million in 2023 from sponsorships and merch, a big chunk of which was thanks to its open-wheel heroics.

“In Formula 1, we fought till the very last race,” Vigna said on the call. “Even though the last season has been a difficult one, often short on satisfaction, we know we must continue to work tirelessly to return to the level that our peers foresee, rightly expect of us, and we look forward to it.”

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