Billionaire Jorge Vergara, owner of Mexico’s Chivas soccer team, dies at 64

Jorge Vergara waves to fans at a news conference in Carson in 2004
Jorge Vergara waves to fans at a news conference in Carson in 2004.
(Associated Press )

 

Jorge Vergara, the mercurial owner of Mexican soccer club Chivas of Guadalajara and former owner of failed MLS club Chivas USA, died Friday following a heart attack. He was 64.

Vergara suffered cardiac failure while in New York City, his son Amaury said in a statement.

A flamboyant, self-made billionaire who loved motorcycles and soccer, Vergara took over a failing franchise in 2002 and guided it to the championship of Mexico’s Apertura season in 2006, along the way making Chivas, alongside Mexico City’s Club America, one of the country’s most popular teams.

But Vergara’s impatience also led him to change coaches 28 times in 17 years, and that, combined with a volatile personality and love of the spotlight, earned comparisons to U.S. owners such as Jerry Jones and George Steinbrenner.

He was also the founder of the multi-level marketing health products company Grupo Omnilife and Omnilife USA.

Vergara was the director of Omnilife de Mexico from 1991 to his death.

Not without controversies, Jorge Vergara once battle with his then-wife over children and company ownership in their divorce

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