Telecom Italia in turn interested in GVT, Vivendi’s “Brazilian Free”

by bold-lichterman

In order to reduce its debt, Vivendi has undertaken since 2012 to concentrate its activity on the media. The French group has thus decided to sell its Brazilian telecommunications subsidiary GVT, sometimes nicknamedmée the “Brazilian free”. So far, the highest bid has been issued by the Spanish Telefónica in early August. It amounts to 6.7 billion euros and runs until September 3. But according to Bloomberg, the Italian telecommunications operator Telecom Italia is preparing to counter it by offering an envelope of 7 billion euros to buy GVT from Vivendi. The operator has not confirmed this amount, but assured of its interest in the Brazilian operator on Sunday evening.

Telefónica and Telecom Italia both competitors and financially linked

Before the formulation of this offer from the Spanish Telefónica, rumors of discussions between Marco Patuano, boss of Telecom Italia, and Vincent Bolloré had already been relayed in the press. Note that the two European telecommunications operators Telefónica and Telecom Italia are financially linked: the first is a shareholder of the holding company which owns the second.

As a reminder, Vivendi had received the authorization to sell its shares in GVT in December 2012 and then hoped to be able to release 7.3 billion euros from this sale. Rothschild and Deutsche Bank banks are in charge of the file. But the sale of GVT obviously took longer than expected. In addition, still as part of its deleveraging, the group sold in November 2013 its shares in Maroc Telecom to the Emirati Etisalat group against 3.9 billion euros, to which were added 310 million euros in dividends for 2012. It was also separated most of its shares in the video game studio Activision Blizzard, in two installments, in October 2013 and then May 2014, pocketing $ 8.2 billion and then $ 850 million. Finally, still in this context of deleveraging, but more recently, Vivendi sold at the beginning of April its SFR subsidiary at Numéricable.

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