APNewsBreak: Brown Turns Down IndyCar CEO Job


(AP) May 14, 2013 – Zak Brown has turned down an offer to become CEO of IndyCar Series,

choosing instead to remain with the motorsports marketing company he founded.

Brown told The

Associated Press on Tuesday he informed Hulman & Co. CEO Mark Miles of his

decision not to take the top job with IndyCar. He’ll instead relocate in July

to England to continue the growth of his Zionsville, Ind.-based agency, Just

Marketing International.

“I’m a

huge fan of IndyCar, it’s a great product and it certainly would have been a

great opportunity and challenge,” Brown said. “I have no doubt Mark

Miles and the team he forms will lead the series down a path of success- and we

at JMI will continue to do our part to support IndyCar.


committed to JMI, excited about our future and therefore unable to pursue any

other opportunities. Mark is fully aware of my passion for IndyCar and my

desire to contribute to the series’ success in any way I can, but at this time

that cannot be in the CEO role.”

Brown had been

contemplating leaving Indiana for London when discussions began earlier this

year with Miles about a potential role for Brown in IndyCar. Miles, hired late

last year as head of IndyCar’s parent company, had said Brown had made it clear

“his only interest would be if we put the pieces together and he was the

head of racing.”

The courtship

dragged on for months, and on Monday the series announced longtime motorsports

veteran Derrick Walker had been hired as head of competition reporting directly

to Miles. Brown said Walker’s hiring had nothing to do with his decision.

“I think

Mark’s first task at hand is getting the organizational structure correct and

the right people in the right roles, and I think he’s well on his way with

getting good people in place,” Brown said. “Certainly Derrick Walker

is a highly experienced individual that can contribute to IndyCar’s


The timing of

the courtship by IndyCar was complicated by the revelation in late March that

Spire Capital Partners was trying to sell its 60 percent ownership stake in

JMI. Spire purchased its share in 2008, and Brown still owns 20 percent along

with advertising agency WPP.

Spire’s desire

to sell clouded JMI’s future at the same time Brown was trying to make a

decision about what he wanted to do with his career. Although Spire has made no

announcement about its plans for JMI, Brown seemed confident Tuesday his place

is leading JMI into the future.

“I have

invested my entire business life into JMI, I’ve got great partners in Spire

Capital and WPP, and the best group of employees,” Brown said. “Collectively

we’ve all turned JMI into market leaders. Motorsports and our business has

never been stronger and we have some very exciting opportunities ahead of us,

which gets me very excited about our future and I have a strong desire to

continue to lead JMI as I’ve done for the past 17 years.”

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may

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