Who is Penni Thow and how is she involved in Lewis Hamilton’s contract negotiations

While negotiations are underway to retain Lewis Hamilton’s services at Mercedes, the process has been relatively slow, as deliberations continue.

Lewis Hamilton’s contract negotiations with Mercedes, known for their deliberate pace, have once again taken centre stage in the Formula 1 community. 

As his current two-year deal nears its conclusion at the close of 2023, discussions are ongoing regarding a potential extension that could see the seven-time champion continue racing well into his 40s. 

The intricate nature of these negotiations has necessitated the involvement of intermediary Penni Thow, a key figure within Hamilton’s management team.

In the past, the world has witnessed Hamilton and Mercedes taking their time to finalize their agreements. 

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A prime example was in 2021 when a one-year deal was inked just before the commencement of pre-season testing. Subsequently, a two-year contract was unveiled later in the same year, laying the foundation for Hamilton’s current stint with the team. 

Now, as the clock ticks down on his existing contract, both parties are immersed in discussions aimed at shaping the next chapter of Hamilton’s illustrious career.

Penni Thow, who joined Hamilton’s inner circle of management personnel in 2021, plays a pivotal role in facilitating these talks. 

With her base in New York, Thow is the founder and CEO of Copper, a firm specialising in talent advisory and investment across domains such as entertainment, media, sports, technology, philanthropy, and fashion – all areas of keen interest to Hamilton, including his collaboration with Tommy Hilfiger. 

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Prior to establishing Copper, Thow served as executive vice-president of SB Projects, collaborating closely with artist manager Scooter Braun, who has managed renowned global stars like Kanye West, Justin Bieber, and Ariana Grande.

Thow’s involvement extends beyond the world of Formula 1. 

Her role in organising the One Love Manchester concert in response to the tragic May 2017 terrorist attack during an Ariana Grande concert underscores her commitment to impactful projects. 

The concert raised nearly £18 million for the cause, showcasing Thow’s dedication to meaningful initiatives.

While the contract discussions encompass various facets, financial terms have not been identified as a primary cause for the delay, according to team boss Toto Wolff. 

Instead, Thow’s involvement serves as a bridge between Hamilton and Wolff, facilitating open and effective communication without the complexities of financial conversations impacting their personal dynamic. 

Wolff elaborated on this approach, stating, “Talking about money matters with a friend is difficult. 

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“Penni helps with that. 

“Penni keeps us informed and how we talk about it goes smoothly. 

“We don’t talk about it with each other, but we both talk to Penni.”