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Vivendi to fund acquisition stake in Mediaset Premium in cash and shares as part of plans to create the biggest media play in southern Europe

France’s Vivendi has tabled an offer for a majority stake in the pay TV unit of Mediaset, Il Corriere della Sera said on Saturday.
The offer has been on the table of the Italian broadcaster’s CEO for several days, the newspaper said without citing sources.
Vivendi wants to fund the acquisition of the stake in Mediaset Premium in cash and shares as part of plans to create the biggest media play in southern Europe. But disagreement over price has slowed down hopes of a quick deal, the paper added.
On Friday some Italian papers, including Corriere, said Vivendi was discussing a possible cash and paper deal to buy Mediaset Premium, sending Mediaset shares higher.
A Mediaset spokeswoman on Saturday said the company was not in talks with Vivendi and that there was nothing new to report.
On Friday Vivendi declined to comment media reports of a deal.
In a report earlier this month, broker Natixis said Mediaset was one of the main targets in Europe.
“It is perfectly possible Vivendi could make an offer for the group, both in cash and paper based on a premium of 25 percent,” it said.
Vivendi, controlled by tycoon Vincent Bollore, has streamlined its business to focus on music, content and pay television and is sitting on a 6.4 billion euro ($7.12 billion)cash pile.
It recently became the biggest shareholder in Telecom Italia and has long been a key investor in Italy’s influential investment bank Mediobanca.

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