Television

Lagardere, Vivendi strike pay- TV deal

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MUMBAI: French media group Lagardere agreed to pay $624 million to Vivendi and transfer its 34% stake in CanalSat to get a 20% stake of Canal+ France.

The swapping of Lagardere's stake in CanalSat, will see Canal's French pay-television channels as well as its satellite platforms under a single ownership.

Lagardere is joining Vivendi Universal, TF1 and M6 in the merged Canal+ France venture, taking a 20-percent stake with an option to increase that stake to 34 percent in three years.

"The new group will be a leader in French broadcasting, able to take on competition from large foreign media groups as well as cable and internet operators. It will reinvigorate and broaden the French pay-TV market, offering consumers a more rich, diversified and attractive product," the companies said in a statement.

This draft agreement is subject to approval by the Conseil Superieur de l'Audiovisuel and antitrust authorities. The deal is expected to close by the third quarter.

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