Reports that insurer Ping An will acquire a stake in the Manchester United Football Club are "fake news," and Chairman and CEO Ma Mingzhe has never owned any shares in the club, said Sheng Ruisheng, spokesman of Ping An, on Monday, news site caijing.com reported.
Media reports have said that Ping An Insurance (Group) Co of China will acquire a 12 percent stake in Manchester United for 270 million pounds (2.27 million). Ma already has a 3.46 percent stake in the club, according to market rumors.
Sheng stressed that as a listed company, Ping An's information should be released in the form of official announcements, not rumors.
In the UK, The Times reported on Sunday that a mysterious Chinese billionaire had expressed interest in buying a stake in Manchester United.
Negotiators representing the potential buyer have contacted shareholders of the club in the past several weeks in an attempt to buy a stake, the report said.