PARIS Oct 10 French tycoon Vincent Bollore said
on Monday that his investment company had raised its stake in
Vivendi to above 20 percent, further tightening his
hold on the French media group.
The Bollore group will hold around 29 percent of the voting
rights of Vivendi by April 20, 2017, taking into account the
double voting rights of the shares it is buying, the statement
Bollore, which held a 15 percent stake in Vivendi, said the
share purchase notably reflected the settlement in cash of an
existing hedging and financing on 34 million Vivendi shares and
the acquisition of another 34.7 millon shares through a share
loan agreement maturing on June 25, 2019.
Under Bollore, who became chairman of Vivendi in 2014,
Vivendi has built a stake in Telecom Italia has and
expanded in video games by taking over Gameloft and
buying a stake of 22.8 percent in Ubisoft.
"These operations reflect the confidence the Bollore Group
has in Vivendi's potential for development and its willingness
to remain as reference shareholder of the company in the long
term," the statement said.
By 0737 GMT Vivendi shares shares gained 1.30 percent at
18.215 euros while Bollore shares were up 1.25 percent
"We see this more as a move to consolidate the long-term
control of the company, perhaps for the benefit of the next
generation of Bollores, rather than a conviction that certain
share price drivers (recovery at Canal Plus) are about to turn
positive," Kepler Cheuvreux analysts said in a note.
"That said, the investment in Vivendi now represents close
to 5 billion euros, more than half the market cap of Bollore
group, so the long-term conviction can be said to be firmer than
ever," the note added.
(Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Geert De Clercq)