El Marsella de Tapie football: purchased matches, drugged rivals and Le Pen Tribunals Bernard Tapie and the PDG of Orange acquitted of defrauding the French state
The French businessman, former politician and former president of the Olympique de Marseille Bernard Tapie has died at the age of 78, according to family sources informed the press group La Provence, of which the businessman was the majority shareholder.
“Dominique Tapie and her children have the infinite pain of announcing the death of her husband and father of all of them, Bernard Tapie, on Sunday, October 3 at 8.40 am, as a result of cancer,” says the statement sent. On his Instagram account, Stphane Tapie, one of the former businessman’s sons, confirmed the news with a short message, “Au revoir mon Phnix”, captioning a black and white photo of him and his father.
At the end of September, Olympique Marseille fans, on the occasion of the UEFA Europa League group E football match between Olympique de Marseille and Galatasaray AS at the Velodrome stadium in Marseille, southern France, a banner in support of the former team president was displayed from the stands marsells.
At the beginning of the same month, his daughter Sophie Tapie announced that her father suffered from a double stomach and esophagus cancer with which he had been fighting for four years.
Bernard Tapie expressed his wish to be buried in Marseille, his city of heart.
A life marked by extremes
Successful businessman, sports leader, minister, singer, television host, actor … but also the protagonist of long legal problems that landed him in jail. Bernard Tapie, had a life marked by extremes.
Born in 1943 in Paris in the bosom of a working family (his father was a milling worker), he studied electronic engineering and as a young man he already showed the desire to achieve fame, when he tried unsuccessfully as a singer under the name Bernard Tapy.
I also tried as race car driver, in Formula 3, a path he abandoned after suffering a serious accident.
He worked in several companies in the electronics sector until in 1979 he founded his own firm, Groupe Bernard Tapie (GBT), dedicated to buying bankrupt companies, cleaning them up and selling them with capital gains.
Well-known companies passed through his hands, such as the first private television channel in France (TF1) or the racket manufacturer Donnay, but the most important, and which ended up being the source of his misfortunes, was Adidas, a German clothing and sports equipment firm, of which in 1990 it acquired 78%.
In the mid-eighties he began to be invited to television shows. His exuberant personality and spontaneity made him a popular entertainer throughout the country, especially among the young.
Passionate about sports, in 1984 I created the cycling team La Vie Claire, with which French star Bernard Hinault won his fifth Tour de France and his third Giro d’Italia.
In 1986, he went on to control Olympique de Marseille. OM was the most traditional team in France, but it was in low hours and Tapie, as president, reflotted it. signing great French and foreign players.
First French European Champion
In 1991, OM reached the final of the then European Cup, although they fell to the Red Star of Belgrade, but in 1993 they won the championship – the first French team to achieve it. against the mighty AC Milan. Tapie took a good part of the national glory.
Also highlighted in politics. Encouraged by the Socialist President Franois MitterrandIn 1988 he ran for office and was elected an independent deputy. In February 1992 he was appointed Minister of Urbanism, a position from which he resigned a month later to defend himself against a complaint from a former partner, although they returned in December.
In 1993 he was elected deputy for the Movement of Radicals of the Left (MRG) and a year later he headed the candidacy of the formation to the European Parliament. His list came in second nationally and he was one of his MEPs.
But had to leave politics for his growing legal problems. First, Adidas was seized in 1992 and attributed to the Crdit Lyonnais bank, which was then public.
The bank sold it to a French industrialist and Tapie asked the State for compensation for considering that he had been unfairly deprived of capital gains from the operation.
From there a veritable judicial labyrinth began. In 2008 an arbitration decided to compensate him with just over 400 million euros, but that ruling was appealed, he accused of fraud and his assets seized for an alleged favoritism.
To this day, after appeals from various parties and conflicting decisions from different courts, the case remains open.
Adidas was his main legal mess, but not the only one: in 1994 he was prohibited from performing any managerial function at Olympique de Marseille due to economic and sports irregularities during his tenure.
Entry into prison
And in 1996 he was indicted for bankruptcy in a summary related to the management of his companies FIBT and GBT. He was in prison from February to July 1997.
In 2001 he was able to briefly return to OM, in which he collided with the then coach, the Spaniard Javier Clemente, who left the club.
In the second half of the 90s, and under the legal prohibition of doing business, he returned to television, recorded an album and even stood out as an actor: debut with no less than the famous director Claude Lelouch, he continued with telefilms, starred in a series of television and the play Someone flew over the cuckoo’s nest.
When in 2009 he was able to go back to business took holdings in some companies, even in the newspaper sector.
He married twice and had three children. Tapie himself summarized his intense life in 2013 in the Le Parisien newspaper: “I have known all environments: business, entertainment, sports. But none is as disgusting as politics.”
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