Gerard Lopez, the owner of the Lotus outfit, believes the vast majority of the teams in formula one are struggling financially.
Lotus' problems have had a high profile in 2013, as the Enstone based team thrived with a competitive car but tackled rumours it was struggling to pay its drivers, employees and suppliers.
But the Russian website f1news.ru quoted Lopez as insisting: "For 80 per cent of the teams, their financial situation is no better than ours.
"If half of those teams say they are leaving formula one, it would lead to the collapse of the championship," he claimed.
Lopez said it is extraordinarily difficult for a team to raise money through investment or traditional sponsorship at present.
"I can go to potential investors and say 'I want to sell millions of cars running on renewable energy and hybrid technology' and they tell me 'Wow! Let's see what we can do!'
"But if I say that I want money for formula one, to participate in one of the biggest sporting events in the world, you don't get the same answer," he added.