New Delhi: With just 19 days to go for the inaugural Indian Grand Prix, Sahara Group on Wednesday bought 42.5 percent stake, worth USD 100 million, in the Vijay Mallya owned Force India F1 team, which has been re-christened as Sahara Force India.

As per the agreement signed on Wednesday between Sahara Group and liquor baron Vijay Mallya, Sahara Group will be issued fresh shares of Watson Limited, which owns the team.

Both Mallya and Sahara Group, headed by Subroto Sahara, will own 42.5 percent equity each in the team and the remaining 15 percent will be with the Michiel Mol family.

Michiel is a Dutch businessman and Director of the team. Mallya will continue to be the Team Principal.

From now on, Subroto Roy will be the Chairman of the team and Mallya will continue to be the team Principal and Managing Director.

Liqour baron Mallya had bought the Spyker Ferrari F1 Team in 2007, reportedly for about for 90 million euros. He then renamed the team as 'Force India' for the 2008 season.

The Force India team is at the sixth position in the constructor's championships with 48 points in the current season.

"Sahara Group will invest approx USD 100 million into the team. The total capital of the company has increased enormously. None of us sold or bought equity and there will be only re-structuring. New shares will be sold," Mallya announced at a press conference.

"Total shares will be distributed in three places. I will have 42.5 percent equity share and Sahara Group another 42.5 percent and Michiel Mol family 15 percent," he added.

Subroto Roy said their aim is to take the team to newer heights.

"Now we have joined hands with Vijay Mallya. We have to discuss the plans so that the team reaches to the top as soon as possible," Subroto said.

Mallya also owns IPL team Royal Challengers.

On the other side, Sahara Group that has interests in financial services, real estate, media and hospitality, is a major promoter of sports in India.

Sahara owns the new IPL team Pune Warriors India and also sponsors India national cricket team. It had also supported the Indian national hockey team.

India will host its first Formula 1 Grand Prix on October 30, 2011 on a 5.14 km track, in Greater Noida built by Jaypee Sports International (JPSI).

(Agencies)