Malcolm Irving Glazer (born May 25, 1928 in Rochester, New York) is an American businessman and sports-team owner. He is the president and chief executive officer of First Allied Corporation, a holding company for his varied business interests, most notably in the food processing industy. He holds controlling stakes in England's Manchester United Football Club, and owns the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a National Football League team in Tampa, Florida, United States.

Biography

Glazer was the fifth of seven children in a Jewish household. He inherited his father's wholesale jewelry business.[2] At that time, he had just $300 to his name. Within five years, he started investing in other businesses.

The business first expanded into property, buying several mobile home (or "trailer") parks in the 1970s, mainly in the Florida area. He went on to become president and chief executive officer of First Allied Corporation,[3] a U.S. holding company for his various business interests, such as food processing, marine supplies, health care, real estate, energy exploration, and broadcasting.

Malcolm Glazer now lives in Palm Beach, Florida. He is married to Linda and has five sons and one daughter: Avram, Kevin, Bryan, Joel, Darcie and Edward.[4] Three of them (Joel, Bryan and Edward), are vice-presidents in First Allied. He runs a wide-ranging business empire that includes shopping centers and nursing homes.

On April 16, 2006, Glazer suffered a stroke causing impaired speech and loss of mobility in his right arm and leg.[5] At the time, his son Joel said "My father's spirits are high and doctors expect his condition to improve with rehabilitation," but after spending much of the intervening period in the hospital, Glazer suffered a second stroke in May 2006.[6]

Business history

Glazer’s first attempt at a corporate takeover was in 1984, when he launched an unsuccessful US$7.6 billion bid to buy the bankrupt freight rail company, US Conrail. He also failed in an attempted takeover of kitchen designer Formica in 1988 and, later, with motorcycle manufacturer Harley-Davidson.

One of the companies that Glazer did purchase successfully was the nearly bankrupt Zapata, an oil and gas company founded by George H. W. Bush. Glazer successfully diversified it into fish protein and Caribbean supermarkets.

Glazer has owned a diverse portfolio of nationwide investments which include food service equipment, food packaging and food supplies, marine protein, broadcasting, health care, property, banking, natural gas and oil, the Internet, stocks and Bonds (finance)

Sports ownership

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

In 1995 Malcolm Glazer purchased the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a National Football League franchise, for a then-record $192 million following the death of former owner Hugh Culverhouse. The front office staff of the team includes sons Bryan Glazer, Edward Glazer and Joel Glazer.

Immediately upon purchasing the Bucs in 1995, Glazer declared the team's home field, Tampa Stadium, inadequate and began lobbying local government for a replacement.[7] Glazer entertained relocation offers from other cities, but kept the Bucs in place after the local government agreed to build the franchise the $200 million state-of-the-art Raymond James Stadium, construction of which was funded by a local sales tax increase. Due in large measure to a very favorable lease agreement in which the team collects most of the revenue from the stadium while the local government must pay almost all of the expenses, the franchise was valued at $963 million by Forbes magazine in 2007.[8]

The Buccaneers have experienced improved success on the field during the Glazer's ownership. After suffering through over a decade of consecutive losing seasons, the Bucs made the playoffs in 1997 and the NFC championship game in 1999 under coach Tony Dungy, and won their first Super Bowl in 2002 under 1st-year coach Jon Gruden.

Manchester United

Between 2003 and 2005, Glazer gradually bought out the shareholders in English Premier League football team Manchester United in a deal that valued the club at around $1.47 billion. The takeover was fiercely opposed by many fans of Manchester United[9], who organised themselves in the form of the independent Manchester United Supporters' Trust (formerly Shareholders United), partly because the Glazer takeover saddled the club with a large debt (over $850m) and interest that comes with it (approx £60 million a year) but also because of many fans' belief that the club should be in the hands of fans and not business men. The mainly match-going fans object to the escalating ticket prices at a time when the club receives more money than ever from TV and sponsorship deals. In anger at the takeover, thousands of fans failed to renew their season tickets. Many of these got together to set up a new club called F.C. United of Manchester. The new protest club has had great success which includes three successive promotions in three years while attracting gates of well over 2000 fans each week, with a record attendance of 6023.[10] More fans, although not following F.C. United of Manchester, also decide to boycott Old Trafford and only attend away games. Anti-Glazer songs and chants are still regularly heard at away games across the country. Since 2005 the ticket prices at Old Trafford have been increased by over 42% (12.3% then 14% then 11%) confirming MUSTs fears that the fans' support would be the source of the finance to service the huge debt.

Supporters of Manchester United in other parts of the world, such as North America and the Far East, have, in relative terms, looked upon the transition in ownership with relative dispassion. Since the deal went through Malcolm Glazer himself has played little visible role at the club, which seems to be run mainly by his children, several of whom are club directors, while he is not. However, the club has been successful since his takeover and has continued spending large amounts of money to attract the best players to the club. The team has won two Premier League titles, a League Cup and in 2008 won the UEFA Champions League in the three seasons so far.

References and Notes

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