Lionsgate Chairman Mark Rachesky to sell 10 million shares

Lionsgate investor-chairman Mark Rachesky is selling 10 million shares of the studio

Lionsgate Chairman Mark Rachesky is selling 10 million shares of the "Hunger Games" studio, marking the first time he has sold the stock in the 10 years he's been invested in the company. 

Rachesky is expected to sell the shares through his investment firm, MHR Fund Management LLC, in an offering underwritten by J.P. Morgan Securities, Lionsgate said on Tuesday. 

MHR currently holds 35.3% of the company, or about 50 million shares. The sale would reduce his position by 20% and bring his position down to 27.5%, still leaving him by far the studio's largest investor.  

The company announced the offering after the close of trading on Wall Street, where the stock ended the day at $33.68 a share. 

Lionsgate will not receive any proceeds from the offering, the company said. 

J.P. Morgan has a 30-day window to buy an additional 1.5 million shares. 

The offering is expected to produce a substantial return for Rachesky. In the last 10 years, the company's stock price has more than tripled. 

Rachesky was named co-chairman in 2011 after a bitter dispute with his onetime associate, billionaire investor Carl Icahn. 

Speculation swirled in October that China's Alibaba Group was interested in purchasing Rachesky's stake, but such a deal has not materialized. 

Follow Ryan Faughnder on Twitter for more entertainment business coverage: @rfaughnder

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