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US firm BlackRock buys shares in United

ESPN staff
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New York-based investment company BlackRock has purchased an 8.21% stake in Manchester United.

BlackRock Inc. claimed it acquired 3.3 million shares in Manchester United PLC in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday. United went public on the New York Stock Exchange last August.

The Glazer family, which took control of the club in 2005, maintains control through Class B shares that carry ten times the voting power of the stock sold to the public. There are 124 million Class B shares and 39 million Class A shares, according to the data provider FactSet.

Despite the family loading the club with debt following their takeover, United have since paid down £62.6 million of high-interest bonds.

The club's stock has risen about 35% in the past three months, closing Wednesday at $16.38.

On Monday the club became the first sports team in the world to be valued at more than $3 billion (£1.9bn).

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