Shanda Group to increase stake in Legg Mason to up to 15 percent: Reuters

Asset manager Legg Mason Inc (LM.N) said on Monday its largest shareholder, Chinese billionaire Tianqiao Chen’s Shanda Group, plans to increase its stake in the company to up to 15 percent.

Shanda, which bought a 10 percent stake in Legg Mason from activist investor Trian Fund Management LP in April, had a 10.4 percent stake as of July 6.

The company also said two Shanda executives, including CEO Chen, would join its board by June 1.

The Singapore-based private investment firm also became the biggest shareholder in online lender LendingClub Corp (LC.N) after raising its stake to 15.13 percent earlier this year.

Chen made a name for himself as an online gaming magnate after launching Shanda Interactive with just $60,000 in the late 1990s.

The business lured millions of Chinese to Internet cafes across the country to play fantasy games, with the media dubbing him China’s answer to Bill Gates as booming sales put him at the top of China’s rich list in 2005.