December 6, 2000 |
French communications and utility giant Vivendi is within days of formally acquiring Seagram Co. and its Universal Studios unit after shareholders of both companies voted overwhelmingly Tuesday to approve the $29-billion deal. Remaining is the expected approval Friday from stockholders of French pay-TV giant Canal Plus and an OK of the deal from the Supreme Court in Ontario, Canada, also considered a given.
December 2, 2000 |
Vivendi may face new difficulty in its acquisitions of Seagram Co. and Canal Plus after a representative from the French movie industry said he will ask a court to force more concessions from the company. The acquisition, which would create the world's second-largest media company, has been approved by France's audiovisual regulator, CSA. Film representatives are worried the French television broadcaster won't be able to meet its obligation to subsidize French movies.
November 2, 2000 |
Entertainment and spirits giant Seagram Co. on Wednesday posted a first-quarter operating profit versus a year-ago loss, beating Wall Street expectations, helped by box-office successes such as "Gladiator" and the sequel to "The Nutty Professor." Seagram also cited strong DVD and home-video sales of "Erin Brockovich" in its film division and hit albums from Italian singer Andrea Bocelli, rapper Eminem and rocker Bon Jovi in its music division.
October 14, 2000 |
Vivendi won European Union antitrust clearance to buy Seagram Co. and Canal Plus for $44 billion, on condition that the French media and utility company sell its stake in British Sky Broadcasting Group. By agreeing to sell within two years its 23% stake in BSkyB, worth as much as $8 billion, Vivendi avoided an extended probe by the EU's antitrust commission. The purchase of Seagram, owner of the largest music company and the Universal film studio, and all of Canal Plus, Europe's No.
October 13, 2000 |
The European Commission will decide today whether to approve, with conditions, the proposed merger between France's Vivendi and Canada's Seagram Co. or take it to an in-depth four-month probe. The $34-billion merger would combine Seagram's entertainment assets, including Universal Pictures and large music holdings, with Vivendi's growing telecommunications and Internet infrastructure.
September 26, 2000 |
Vivendi pledged to accept restrictions on its business to win European Commission approval for its $33.4-billion purchase of Seagram Co., the owner of Universal Music Group, the commission said. "The parties have offered concessions," said Amelia Torres, spokeswoman for Competition Commissioner Mario Monti. The offer automatically pushes back the deadline for the commission to rule on the merger from Monday to Oct. 13.