Steve Morgan (businessman)

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Steve Morgan
Born Stephen Peter Morgan
25 November 1952 (1952-11-25) (age 63)
Garston, Liverpool, England
Nationality British
Occupation Businessman
Years active Since 1974
Known for Owner of
Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C.
(2007–2016)
Home town Garston, Liverpool, England
Net worth £880 million (2016)[1]
Title Founder and chairman of Redrow
Term 1974–2000, 2009–present
Predecessor Sir Jack Hayward OBE
Successor Incumbent

Stephen Peter Morgan, CBE (born 25 November 1952) is an English businessman, philanthropist and former chairman of Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C..

Business career[edit]

Training as a site engineer, in 1974 Morgan borrowed £5,000 from his father to buy his then employers, Wellington Civil Engineering, which was on the verge of going out of business.[2] He developed this company into the builder Redrow plc. Under his chairmanship, Redrow was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1994, ultimately becoming a FTSE 250 Company.

The 1990s saw Morgan also invest in hotels, developing St David's Park Hotel in North Wales and Carden Park in Cheshire, eventually merging his interests into the De Vere Group.[2]

In 1992, Morgan was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to the construction industry.[3] He is a fellow of the Institute of Builders, and holds honorary fellowships at Cardiff University,[4] Liverpool John Moores University,[5] Glyndŵr University.,[6] Wolverhampton University,[7]

In November 2000, after 26 years, Morgan stepped down as Redrow chairman,[2] although his company, Bridgemere, remained one of its largest shareholders. In 2001 Morgan founded Brownfield specialist company Harrow Estates plc. He eventually rejoined the Redrow board in March 2009 as deputy chairman and chairman-designate after having rebuilt his stake in the company.[8]

In 2001 Morgan founded The Morgan Foundation, which has awarded nearly £12m to over 350 charities across North Wales, Merseyside, West Cheshire and North Shropshire. Its aim is to make a difference to those organisations and charities who work directly with children, families, disadvantaged, elderly and disabled within the remit area.[9]

The 2016 Sunday Times Rich List estimated his net worth at £880 million.[1]

Morgan was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2016 Birthday Honours for philanthropic services.[10]

Football[edit]

Liverpool[edit]

A fanatical football fan, Morgan was a lifelong Liverpool F.C. supporter, having followed the club from the days of Bill Shankly.[2]

A shareholder at the club, Morgan attempted several times to take full control, most notably when he made an offer in 2004 which valued the club at £61m. This was rejected, as the board felt that the offer undervalued the club.[11] When Liverpool eventually was sold to Tom Hicks and George Gillett in 2007, the reported value was in excess of £170m.[12]

In October 2013 he was criticised for inviting former Merseyside Chief Constable Norman Bettison as his guest in the directors' box at a Wolves away match. Bettison is a controversial figure in Merseyside for his role in connection with the Hillsborough football disaster in 1989.[13] Wolves responded on its official Twitter account, saying "The story is that Sir Norman Bettison attended the Bradford City game in the same way he has attended many Wolves games in the past. Steve Morgan and Sir Norman Bettison have known each other for many years. Everyone connected with the club has the utmost sympathy and respect for the victims of Hillsborough and their families."[14]

Wolverhampton Wanderers[edit]

In 2007 an opportunity arose to purchase Wolverhampton Wanderers, a club which he had previously regarded as his "second club".[15] In a unique deal Morgan agreed to buy the Club from Sir Jack Hayward for a token fee of £10 on condition he invested £30 million in the Midlands club. [16] The takeover was formally completed on 9 August 2007 when Morgan became Chairman of the club.[17] On handover, Sir Jack Hayward stated that Morgan "had had a heart transplant – from Liverpool to Wolverhampton."[15] In May 2009 Wolves were promoted, as champions, from the Championship to the Premier League, but were relegated back to the Championship in May 2012 after three seasons in the Premier League. After suffering a second successive relegation in the 2012–13 season, Wolves played in League One in the 2013–14 season and finished as champions, returning to the Championship.

On 28 September 2015, Morgan stepped down from the board with immediate effect and announced the club was for sale.[18]

On 21 July 2016, it was confirmed that the Chinese company Fosun International had bought the club from Morgan for an estimated £45 million.[19][20]

Family[edit]

Morgan, who resides in Cheshire, has been married twice and has five children.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Rich List 2016". The Sunday Times (page 45). 24 April 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c d "'Business-fan' bidding for Liverpool" BBC.co.uk (Sport), 13 May 2004 (14 August 2009)
  3. ^ Instone, David; "Wolves are handed over to Morgan for a tenner" Independent.co.uk, 22 May 2007 (14 August 2009)
  4. ^ "List of Honorary Fellows and Fellows" Cardiff.ac.uk (14 August 2009)
  5. ^ Liverpool John Moores University: List of Fellows
  6. ^ Wolverhampton Wanderers: Whos Who
  7. ^ "Honorary Graduates 2010" wlv.ac.uk
  8. ^ "Redrow PLC (RDW)" Investegate.co.uk, 20 March 2009 (14 August 2009)
  9. ^ "Merseyside Funding Information Portal". mfip.org.uk. 27 January 2011. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  10. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 61608. p. B9. 11 June 2016.
  11. ^ "How Steve Morgan tried to take control; Business Editor Bill Gleeson reports on the entrepreneur's attempt to invest in Liverpool FC.". Liverpool Daily Post & Echo. Retrieved 22 December 2013. 
  12. ^ "Liverpool takeover completed by US company NESV". BBC News. 15 October 2010. Retrieved 22 December 2013. 
  13. ^ "Wolves boss Steve Morgan and the Hillsborough cop " Express & Star". Expressandstar.com. Retrieved 4 November 2013. 
  14. ^ Rumsby, Ben. "Wolves chief Steve Morgan under fire from Hillsborough campaigners for hosting Sir Norman Bettison at matches". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 22 December 2013. 
  15. ^ a b Berry, Paul; "Morgan takes Wolves into a new era" BirminghamMail.net, 10 August 2007 (14 August 2009)
  16. ^ "Tycoon Morgan in Wolves takeover" BBC.co.uk (Sport), 21 May 2007 (14 August 2009)
  17. ^ "Morgan completes Wolves takeover" BBC.co.uk (Sport), 9 August 2007 (14 August 2009)
  18. ^ "Club statement: Steve Morgan". Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C. 28 September 2015. 
  19. ^ "Fosun Group Takes Over Wolves". Wolverhampton Wanderers. 21 July 2016. 
  20. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/36852323

External links[edit]