Randy Lerner


Randy Lerner

Infobox Celebrity
name = "Randy Lerner"


imagesize =
caption =
birth_date = birth date and age|1962|2|21
birth_place = Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
death_date =
death_place =
occupation = Owner of the Cleveland Browns & Chairman of Aston Villa F.C.
salary =
networth = loss$1.5 billion (2008) [http://www.forbes.com/lists/2008/10/billionaires08_Randolph-Lerner_Z9UN.html #785 Randolph Lerner - Forbes.com ] ]
spouse = Lara Lerner
children = 3
website =
footnotes =

Randolph D. Lerner 'Legend' (born February 21, 1962, in Brooklyn, New York) is an American entrepreneur and sports team owner.

Lerner has been the owner of the American football team, the Cleveland Browns, of the National Football League (NFL) since October 2002, and the Chairman of Aston Villa Football Club of Birmingham, England since 2006. His personal fortune is estimated at USD over 1.5 billion in 2008.

Lerner graduated from Columbia University in 1984, spending 1983 at Clare College in Cambridge, England. During his time at Cambridge Lerner followed English football (soccer), taking an interest in three teams: Arsenal, Fulham and Aston Villa. He graduated from Columbia Law School and is a member of the New York and District of Columbia Bar Associations. Prior to entering the business world, he worked as a lawyer in New York City.

Although he had grown up in the United States, with a father who had been involved with the original Cleveland Browns franchise under Art Modell, Lerner's interest in England's top flight endured long after he had returned to the States. He eventually added Aston Villa to his list of investments, becoming the second American owner of a Premiership club in 2006 - the first being Malcolm Glazer, who purchased the majority share of Manchester United in 2005. Since then Liverpool FC has also had American investment in the shape of George Gillett and Tom Hicks.

Business history

Lerner's business career began at the Progressive Corporation as an investment analyst. In 1991, he started an independent investment firm with Progressive capital called Securities Advisors, Inc. (SAI), which he owned and managed until 2001. SAI initially specialized in arbitrage before shifting its focus to equity investing.

In 1993, Lerner became a director at MBNA, a company in which his father was founder and builder, and continued to lead until his father's death at which time he became company chairman.

ports team ownership

Cleveland Browns

Control of the Browns was given to Lerner, when his father, Al Lerner died in October 2002 - four years to the day after he was awarded the new Browns franchise. He also serves as a member of the National Football League's Business Ventures Committee. Lerner has generally been a low key owner since assuming control of the franchise.

Aston Villa

On 24 July 2006 it was reported that Randy Lerner intended to purchase English Premiership association football club Aston Villa F.C. following a statement from Cleveland Browns management indicating Lerner was pursuing business interests in the United Kingdom. Lerner pulled out of the bid to buy Aston Villa two days later after talks with the club chairman Doug Ellis broke down but the following day reports emerged that Lerner might still make a formal £64 million bid for the club.

On 14 August 2006 it was confirmed that Lerner had reached an agreement of £62.6 million with Aston Villa for a takeover of the club. The statement to the London Stock Exchange confirmed that 60% of the club's shares, including the 39% stake of Doug Ellis had been sold to Lerner, beating competition from consortia led by Michael Neville, Nicholas Padfield QC, and Athole Still. At this stage, the sale still awaited the approval of the shareholders of Aston Villa, although it was expected to be approved without a hitch.

On 25 August, the LSE announced that Lerner had secured 59.69% of Villa shares, making him the majority shareholder. He also appointed himself Chairman of the club.

The "BBC" reported on 5 September 2006 that Lerner had now moved closer to taking full control of the club, after increasing his share to 85.5%. [cite web| url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/a/aston_villa/5316052.stm | title=Lerner closer to control of Villa | work=Article on BBC Sport | accessdate=5 September | accessyear=2006]

By the time that the September 18 1pm deadline had been reached RAL had acceptance of 89.69% of the share. Due to the acceptance only being 0.31% below the conditional limit, RAL accepted it and made the bid unconditional.On September 19 2006 Aston Villa PLC executive Chairman Doug Ellis and his board resigned, to be replaced by Randy Lerner as Chairman and General Charles C.Krulak, Bob Kain and Michael Martin as non-executive directors.

Philanthropy

Randy Lerner has supported the National Portrait Gallery since 2002. On January 23 2008 it was announced that he had donated £5 million to the gallery, the largest single donation that it has ever received. In recognition the ground floor galleries will be named "The Lerner Galleries". [cite web| url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/7203353.stm | title=Football Boss gives gallery £5m | work=Article on BBC News | accessdate=23 January | accessyear=2008]

For the 2008/2009 season, Aston Villa will forego traditional shirt sponsorship, and the monies it brings, by instead wearing on their shirts the name of a local children's hospice, Acorns.

References

External links


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