6:40am Saturday 12th May 2012
By Iwan Gabe Davies
NEWPORT Gwent Dragons director Tony Brown has been named in the latest Sunday Times’ Sport Rich List as being among their top ten “richest in rugby” index.
The newspaper estimate the entrepreneur’s wealth to be worth £78m and make him the tenth richest rugby union or league club owner or director in the UK and Ireland.
Last June Brown, who re-joined the region’s board of directors in early 2011 after giving up ownership of the Dragons six years earlier, invested in them with a six-figure sponsorship deal.
The amount of the new deal was undisclosed but Bisley was the region’s ‘headline’ sponsor, meaning they were the main name advertised on the Dragons’ jerseys.
And the new stand at Rodney Parade, which opened in September, part of a £4m ground redevelopment, was named the Bisley Stand after Brown’s company, Bisley Office Furniture. The 75-year-old part-funded the stand on top of the six figure sponsorship.
The businessman was also named in the Sunday Times’ Rich List again this year, putting him as one of the joint 949th wealthiest people in the UK.
His entry in the guide said: “Brown has built Bisley Office Furniture into Britain’s leading manufacturer of steel office furniture.”
Brown’s empire has bases in both Newport and Bisley, Surrey, employing nearly 1,000 people.
Retired Newbridge boxer Joe Calzaghe, 40, was named 69th in the Sunday Times’ Sport Rich List with his fortune put at £14m.
The newspaper said the former Argus columnist made £13m from both beating Bernard Hopkins in 2008 to win the light-heavyweight world title and then defending it against Roy Jones.
As well as living in Gwent, the undefeated star is said to have a home in Chelsea and a villa in Barbados, has invested in property in Mexico and is a member of two film partnerships.
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