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Boston firm increases its stake in Lions Gate

Fidelity owns 14.6% of the Canadian entertainment co.

VANCOUVER — Investment group Fidelity Management & Research of Boston said accounts managed by it now own 14.6% of the common shares of Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.

It had previously held about 10% of the outstanding shares of the struggling Canadian film and television producer and distributor.

FMR denied that it had plans for a takeover. It made the announcement Friday after the close of markets for the year and said the purchases were made purely for investment purposes.

On Dec. 23 Lions Gate filed a preliminary prospectus indicating that it was raising $30 million through the sale of convertible preferred shares of stock and common share purchase warrants. In November it had secured a $13.2 million credit line with National Bank of Canada. Lions Gate said it will use the funds to help finance its expansion plans.

The 32-month-old Vancouver-based firm, distributor of “Sleepy Hollow” and “Dogma,” posted its first small profit in November. It holds a 45% equity stake in Mandalay Pictures, which is scheduled to begin shooting “Enemy at the Gates,” starring Ed Harris and Joseph Fiennes, in Germany this month. The Mandalay connection was supposed to launch Lions Gate as a major Hollywood player, but recognition has been earned mainly through its boutique distribution arm, which picked up Academy Award nominated films “Gods and Monsters,” “Affliction” and “The Red Violin.”

Lions Gate shares closed at $2.38 on Friday, up 19¢.

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