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Vivendi Combines Web Products

November 20, 2001

Vivendi Universal on Monday launched a U.S. company aimed at bringing more cohesion to the company's music, games and educational Web sites.

The company, Vivendi Universal Net USA Group Inc., will bring Vivendi's Web sites, from MP3.com to Virtual Vegas, under a single management team headed by Robin D. Richards, the newly appointed chief executive of Vivendi Universal's MP3.com online music service.

The Los Angeles-based company will report to Vivendi's Internet division in Paris.

A Vivendi spokeswoman said the consolidation may bring an unspecified number of layoffs, but that no decision had been made. Vivendi owns Universal Studios in Universal City.

In a restructuring of its Web operations, Walt Disney Internet Group recently laid off several dozen workers from its Internet operations, including ABCNews.com.

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