The French group now ranks as the Group's second largest shareholder, after the firm Amber Capital.
French conglomerate Vivendi announced that it had increased its stake in PRISA, the publisher of EL PAÍS, to 9.9% of the share capital, making it the second-largest shareholder of the leading news and education group in the Spanish-speaking world, and owner of EL PAÍS, Santillana, SER radio network, Radio Caracol, AS and LOS40. Vivendi had initially acquired a 7.6% stake from HSBC for 50 million euros on January 22, a move which saw PRISA shares rise sharply to record a gain of 9.59%, placing the share price at 1.03 euros. This Monday, PRISA shares once again showed strong gains as markets opened.
Vivendi controls major assets in the telecommunications, media and entertainment markets, including Universal Music Group, Canal + and Editis. The French group explained in a statement that “buying into PRISA is part of Vivendi's ongoing strategy of consolidating itself as a major content, communications and media group, while also giving it access to Spanish-speaking markets in Europe, Latin America and among Latinos in the United States”.
“Vivendi's strategy also has very clear synergies with the roadmap drawn up by PRISA, which involves boosting digital education, news and entertainment content,” PRISA stated last Friday.
PRISA’s biggest shareholder is the British firm Amber Capital, with 29.8%, followed by Vivend, now the second largest shareholder with 9.9%. Telefónica is the third biggest shareholder with 9% while Rucandio ranks fourth with 7.6%. Amber Capital and Vivendi are already partners in the French communications group Lagardère.
The Deputy Chair of PRISA, Mr. Joseph Oughourlian, in his capacity as Chairman of the Board, welcomed Vivendi to the Group, adding that "Vivendi's investment provides the strength and security necessary for PRISA's future project and endows it with an important new ally to successfully see its plans through." Mr. Manuel Mirat, CEO of PRISA, spoke of his “enthusiasm for working closely with Vivendi and its teams, identifying synergies and business opportunities, promoting the creation of quality content to generate value for PRISA shareholders and opportunities for Vivendi and PRISA in Spanish-speaking countries”.
Vivendi controls major assets in music (Universal Music Group), TV series and films (Canal + Group), publishing (Editis) and video games (Gameloft). In the distribution sector, Vivendi acquired and repositioned Dailymotion to provide its content with a new digital showcase and, in addition, it has joined forces with several operators and telecommunications platforms in order to greatly expand its distribution networks. Finally, through the communications agency Havas, the group has unique creative experience in promoting free content and producing short formats, which are increasingly viewed on mobile devices.
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