The French rookie, also with the strong backing of Ferrari’s development programme, will be Force India’s reserve and ‘Friday’ driver this season.
Without mentioning 22-year-old Bianchi’s name, the Silverstone based team announced this week that Brazilian car parts maker Aethra is a new sponsor.
Aethra was Bianchi’s main sponsor in GP2 last season, when he finished the feeder series in third place behind champion Romain Grosjean and Luca Filippi.
“Particularly after a bad start, it is unfortunate that 2011 did not go as we wanted for Bianchi in GP2,” his manager Nicolas Todt told Italy’s Autosprint magazine last week.
“It was therefore impossible for him to win the title and so similarly (impossible) to find him a formula one race seat with a good team.”