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Fedun Wants to Float Spartak

The Spartak soccer club’s new stadium, which is expected to open in early 2014 in the northwest of Moscow.

Spartak Moscow's billionaire owner, Leonid Fedun, plans to float the soccer team's shares on the stock market to recoup some of the huge sums of money he has plowed into the Russian Premier League side.

"My dream is to make the club self-sufficient within four or five years," said Fedun, who has invested almost $1 billion since buying Spartak in 2003.

"The club does not represent a business venture for me right now," he told local media.

"It's more like a social mission, almost like it is for Bill Gates, who spends 90 percent of his money on social projects," Fedun said of the American billionaire owner of Microsoft.

"I hope an IPO will increase the club's profit three or four times by 2017 or 2018. Then I could recoup some of my money."

Fedun is rated among Russia's 20 richest men by Forbes magazine, with a net worth of $7.1 billion.

He has invested more than $500 million in the construction of a new ground for Spartak, due to open in early 2014 in Moscow's northwest.

Last month, Fedun sold the naming rights on the stadium, which is due to host group matches in the 2017 Confederations Cup and the World Cup the following year, to a local bank in a six-year deal worth more than $40 million.

Spartak is the country's most popular and successful soccer team with nine domestic titles between 1992 and 2001, but it has not won a trophy since lifting the Russian Cup in 2003. The team is fourth in the table, 11 points behind bitter city rival and league leader CSKA, with 10 matches left this season.

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