When he woke up this morning, Randy Lerner had already lost $100,000 just for owning Aston Villa. The former owner of the Cleveland Browns is now toiling away with another franchise, Aston Villa, and it is not going so well in the financial department. According to Forbes, Aston Villa has racked up a debt of $356 million in tax losses since Lerner bought the club for $95 million in November 2006, which came with an acquired debt of $24 million.
Turning a profit has been difficult to come by for Aston Villa. The club has suffered nine straight years of tax losses, which has left the club strapped and unable to make necessary moves to make any movement in the Premier League. Of course, Lerner can sleep at night knowing he will be responsible for another $100,000 in the morning, because his net worth is valued at over $1 billion. However, his net worth was around $1.6 billion when he purchased the team nearly a decade ago, and it’s dropped by over $500 million since.
Lerner sold his ownership stake in the Cleveland Browns in 2012 to Jimmy Haslam. In 2006, he purchased Aston Villa after contemplating buying Arsenal and Fulham. Maybe those two clubs dodged a bullet here. Not only is Aston Villa in the red, they are also trying (perhaps fruitlessly) to avoid being relegated from the Premier League.
Lerner has reportedly been trying to sell Aston Villa for years, but nobody appears to be biting with any serious bids. In January, Lerner appointed Steve Hollis as chairman in hopes of providing some stability for the club moving forward. He seems to be acknowledging he has failed Aston Villa in the front office, but the damage looks to have already been done.