Legg Mason recently took a $44 million venture capital investment in Ning, a social-networking startup looking to compete with Facebook and MySpace, The Baltimore Sun reports.

Although Ning and Legg Mason would not comment, it is believed that Legg Mason star portfolio manager Bill Miller is behind the deal, since he has often made unorthodox investments. Furthermore, he is chairman of the Santa Fe Institute, which studies “natural, artificial and social systems.”

This isn’t the first time, either, that Legg Mason has invested in a technology company. It has a large holding in Convera, which allows companies to create specialized search engines.

The staff of Money Management Executive ("MME") has prepared these capsule summaries based on reports published by the news sources to which they are attributed. Those news sources are not associated with MME, and have not prepared, sponsored, endorsed, or approved these summaries.

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