Manchester United, Tampa Bay Buccaneers owner Glazer passes away
Malcolm Glazer, a reclusive self-made billionaire and patriarch of the family that owns the NFL's Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Manchester United soccer club, died today, the teams said. He was 85.
Glazer, who as a teenager sold watch parts from a suitcase before building a wide-ranging business empire, bought the Buccaneers in 1995 for a then-NFL record of $192 million. He later persevered with the controversial purchase by an American of one of England's most-storied soccer teams in 2005.
However, Glazer was largely sidelined in recent years from both the teams' business dealings by a series of strokes.
After his purchase of the Buccaneers, he led what had traditionally been one of the weakest teams in the National Football League to its first Super Bowl championship in 2003.
"A dynamic business leader, Glazer helped mold the Buccaneers into a model franchise and one respected league-wide," the Buccaneers said in a statement on their website.
His supporters credited him with spending big to hire players and a coaching staff to turn around the team in one of the NFL's smallest markets.
"He set the stage for our turnaround," former Tampa Bay linebacker Derrick Brooks tweeted.
While the team has struggled on the field recently, Glazer's investment has proven profitable and the business magazine Forbes estimates it is now worth more than $1 billion.
His death appears unlikely to lead to any ownership change, according to a statement by the Buccaneers. The family's "long established estate succession plan" means the Tampa Bay Buccaneers "will remain with the Glazer family for generations to come," the team said.