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2014-05-15 09:13

RACE SET FOR SEPTEMBER 2014: French driver Emmanuel Collard drives an electric Spark-Renault SRT_01E racing car during testing in April 2014 ahead of Formula E’s new championship in Beijing, China on September 15. Image: AFP/THIERRY ZOCCOLA

LONDON, England - The Formula E electric car racing series has raised the equivalent of R700-million from new investors including Californian technology company Qualcomm to help fund its launch later in 2014, reports organisers.

Qualcomm and Amura Capital, a private equity fund based in Andorra, are the main investors ahead of the first race, scheduled to take place around Beijing's Olympic stadium in September 2014.

ELECTRIC CAR BOOST

Featuring teams backed by Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio and British entrepreneur Richard Branson, Formula E is designed to help boost the image and sales of electric cars.

US investment group Causeway Media Partners, owners of the Boston Celtics basketball team, has already joined founders Alejandro Agag and fellow Spaniard Enrique Banuelos as backers of Formula E.

Three more investors are expected to sign up.

Agag said: "What started out as an idea, is now becoming a reality. Formula E is moving closer to its goal to show fans around the world the true potential of electric cars."

Formula E races will be held in the centres of 10 major cities, with London and Buenos Aires on the calendar.

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