Vivendi has entered into exclusive negotiations to sell 100% of its publishing house Editis to a subsidiary of Czech Media Invest (CMI) founded by Daniel Kretinsky.
Following its latest board meeting on March 8, Vivendi said it has received several bids for the sale of Editis and has chosen the offer brought by International Media Invest, a subsidiary of Kretinsky’s CMI. The deal would have to be approved by the European Commission.
Vivendi said the “plan is to distribute the Editis shares to the Vivendi shareholders, and their listing on the Euronext Growth market, is put on hold.” Editis’ evenues dropped by 8% to €789 million in 2022, according to Vivendi. The Paris-based banner is home to Robert Laffont, Plon and Julliard, among others.
Besides Editis, Vivendi is the parent company of Canal+ Group, advertising firm Havas, video games banner Gameloft and live entertainment and ticketing outfit Vivendi Village. While it’s in the process of selling Editis, Vivendi has, in recent years, acquired key assets in the publishing world, notably Prisma and a 57.35-percent stake in Lagardere.
With the sale of Editis, Vivendi hopes to be able to acquire all of Lagardere, including Hachette. The European Commission raised anti-trust concerns over Vivendi’s contemplated ownership of both Hachette and Editis.
Kretinsky, a Czech billionaire who speaks fluent French, has become one of the most influential media owners in France. CMI is now the parent company of several magazines, notably Elle, Public, Télé 7 jours and Marianne.