TONY STEWART FACTFILE
A talented athlete as a teenager, Stewart competed for Yorkshire before becoming an apprentice electrician at the age of 16. He then set up his own business before founding ASD Lighting in the early 1980s, specialising in designing and supplying lights to the security industry. His company was the first to design lights with inbuilt infrared sensors enabling them to detect motion. Within a decade he had clients worldwide and his growing fortune allowed him to sponsor the Kop at Hillsborough and the Rotherham Titans rugby union side. Stewart is now worth an estimated £140m and employs more than 200 staff.
Invited to a meeting to discuss the plight of Rotherham in 2008, Stewart decided to take control and became majority shareholder a few days later. Having sold the training ground to pay off debts and moved the club to Sheffield’s Don Valley Stadium to avoid the crippling rent at Millmoor, he set about plans to build a £20m stadium in Rotherham. Having avoided relegation under Mark Robins despite a 17-point deduction, the Millers then reached the League Two play-off final under Ronnie Moore in 2010. The completion of the New York Stadium and the appointment of Steve Evans in 2012 led to a change in fortunes, with the Millers winning two consecutive promotions to reach the Championship in 2014.