Vivendi chooses Altice for exclusive negotiations on SFR

Vivendi chooses Altice for exclusive negotiations on SFR

14 MAR 2014

Vivendi’s supervisory board has decided to enter into negotiations with cable operator Altice over taking a majority stake in French mobile operator SFR, a knockback for the rival bid from Bouygues Telecom.

The board will talk exclusively with Altice, which owns French cable operator Numericable, for the next three weeks and then meet again afterwards to decide whether to proceed with its offer.

Altice offered €11.75 billion for the SFR stake plus a 32 per cent stake in the combined Altice-SFR entity when it is floated. The bid also provides Vivendi with pre-determined exit conditions, Vivendi noted in a statement.

In addition to the rival Bouygues Telecom bid, Vivendi has also been considering a demerger of SFR.

The announcement from Vivendi’s board is a major blow to Bouygues, which lobbied the French government aggressively to support its bid.

Both Altice and Bouygues increased their bids yesterday in last minute charges towards the winning line.

The statement from Vivendi added that its board considers the Altice offer “to be the most pertinent for the Group’s shareholders and employees, with the opportunity for effective execution.”

And it claims the offer also achieves Vivendi’s objective “to rapidly become a leading European media and content player and develop SFR as a dynamic leader in high speed fixed and mobile telephony.”


Richard Handford

Richard is the editor of Mobile World Live’s money channel and a contributor to the daily news service. He is an experienced technology and business journalist who previously worked as a freelancer for many publications over the last decade including...

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