Troubled Aston Villa owner Tony Xia publicly rebuked in China
Villa owner Tony Xia’s nightmarish summer has been dealt another blow after he was publicly rebuked by the Shanghai Stock Exchange.
The criticism does not relate to any business being conducted by Villa, but to a deal relating to Lotus Health, another one of Xia’s companies.
Xia was alleged to have concealed information while chairman of Lotus, and has subsequently been publicly condemned by one of China’s two big stock exchanges.
As revealed by investigative website Villa Leaks, this public shaming will make it more difficult for Xia to entice Chinese investors into other projects.
Xia is currently looking for outside investors to help with his cash crisis at Villa, and it’s believed he would prefer investment to come from China rather than Europe.
Two different groups have approached him about a possible takeover, but the Villa owner is keen to cling on to his majority share in the club for as long as possible.
As of last night, talks have failed to progress for several days.
Losing face in China could also strengthen Xia’s desire to keep hold of Villa, because selling the club would be another public blow to his reputation.
It is also a worrying turn of events for the club, who are reliant on their owner to keep paying the bills.