Relegated Aston Villa FC yesterday (18th May) announced that has officially completed the sale of 100% ownership to Chinese businessman Jiantong Xia.
The deal, with a reported fee of £60m to £70m, will see Xia become Villa’s new Chairman once both the Premier League and the Football League approve. In an official announcement, Villa indicated the new owner’s “immediate objective is to return Aston Villa to the Premier League” and then to European football. In addition, he also ambitiously “plans to make Aston Villa the most famous football Club in China with a huge fan base”.
Recon Group, privately owned by Dr Xia, “owns the controlling interest in five publicly listed companies on the Hong Kong and Chinese stock exchanges” and many other companies with 35,000 employees in 75 countries, the Club announced. The takeover of Aston Villa is regarded by Xia as “the cornerstone of his Sports, Leisure and Tourism Division”.
Described as a passionate football fan, Xia has now taken the opportunity to own a professional English football club, marking another takeover deal over sports properties overseas.
Xia himself was “among the initial 25 highly-rated graduates out of 1,000 sent to study overseas” after graduation. And he spent six years at Harvard and Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the US, including five months exchange with Oxford University, before coming back to China.
Aston Villa FC is an English football club which has been relegated from Premier League to Football League after a disappointing 2015/2016 campaign.
Source: Aston Villa FC