Firoz Kassam

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Firoz Kassam (born 1955) is a Tanzanian-born, businessman. He is the former owner of Oxford United F.C.

He was born in Tanzania ofPakistani parents and came to Britain as a student during the 1970s.

In the Sunday Times Rich List 2009 ranking of the wealthiest people in the UK he was placed 309th with an estimated fortune of £180million.

Firoz Kassam made his fortune as a slum hotelier and in the 1980s was labelled a "merchant of misery". He bought run-down London hostels and hotels and was paid by local councils to fill them with homeless people andasylum seekers, until the inmates rebelled over the conditions in which they were being housed.

In 1999 Kassam bought Oxford United F.C. for only £1, also taking over its debts, estimated to be in the region of £13m. In 2000 he started building a new 12,500 three sided stadium at Minchery Farm on the edge of Oxford, which he called the Kassam Stadium. Construction of this stadium had actually been in progress since 1997, but was suspended in the early stages due to the club's financial problems. The fourth side of the stadium was left empty due to Oxford's decline in the league, as they had dropped down two divisions while the stadium was being built.

The development includes a hotel, cinema, bowling alley, gym, health centre and restaurants. Oxford United played its first game there on 18...
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