The Premier League’s cosmopolitan cornucopia of foreign-based owners could soon be welcoming a new nationality to its collection in the shape of Kazakh businessman Tevfik Arif, who is a ‘front-runner’ to in the race to buy Aston Villa according to The Independent.
Villa are currently joint-ninth (you won’t get a price about Manchester City or Chelsea) in bwin’s Premier League top-ten finish betting for the 2014/15 campaign at 13/5 and new and significant investment could make all the difference to a club that recorded losses of £53m in the tax year to May 2013.
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Want to know more about the man who could be the next Randy Lerner? Read on…
A property mogul, he has in the past been a business associate of Donald Trump.
Arif is a man with very powerful friends and US ‘cartoon’ billionaire Trump once praised the Kazakh’s ‘international connections’, having been involved in prospective real estate endeavours with the would-be Villa buyer in Russia, Poland, Turkey and Ukraine.
He allegedly owns stakes in a variety of world class players including Radamel Falcao and Neymar.
A 2013 article by the financial news organ Bloomberg suggested that Arif is one of a number of investors in Doyen Capital LLP, a group which acts as a third-party investor in the transfers of footballers around the globe.
Arif and companies related to him have not been immune to criminal investigation down the years.
Turkish authorities arrested the potential new Villa owner aboard a yacht once owned by Mustafa Attaturk (the founder of modern-day Turkey) in the autumn of 2010, accusing him of running a prostitution ring, although he was later cleared of any wrong doing.
Meanwhile Bayrock Group LLC, a company which was founded by Arif, was accused of being a “racketeer-influenced and corrupt organization” that he “operated through a pattern of criminal activity” by a high-level former employee.