June 8, 2011 / 11:35 AM / 6 years ago

Major investor cuts stake in Barnes & Noble

<p>A girl reads in an aisle at a Barnes and Noble bookstore in Falls Church, Virginia, August 24, 2010.Kevin Lamarque</p>

(Reuters) - Barnes & Noble Inc's (BKS.N) third-largest shareholder, money manager Aletheia Research and Management Inc, reported a reduced stake in the company, weeks after John Malone's Liberty Media Corp LINTA.O offered to buy the bookstore chain for $1 billion.

In a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday, Aletheia said as of June 1, it had an 8.65 percent stake, or 5.2 million shares, in the company.

That is down from the 10.59 percent stake it held as of April 20. Aletheia is third to Chairman Len Riggio and Ron Burkle's Yucaipa in terms of stake in the company.

In September last year, Barnes & Noble beat back an effort by Burkle, supported by Aletheia, to land a seat on the board. In November, Aletheia had voted in favor of ratifying the poison pill.

In May this year, Liberty Media offered $17 a share for Barnes & Noble, nine months after the largest U.S. bookstore chain put itself up for sale.

Barnes & Noble shares closed at $18.97 Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange. They have risen more than 30 percent since Liberty Media made its offer.

Reporting by Nivedita Bhattacharjee; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty

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