Liberty wins $1bn from Vivendi on USA Net

A US jury has awarded $956 million to Liberty Media after concluding that the French group Vivendi deceived it in a decade-old deal involving the USA Networks.

Th US District Court in Manhattan issued the award after hearing evidence related to a stock swap involving the network. Liberty Media had accused Vivendi of deceiving it with inflated statements about its finances when executives inside the company were aware of a liquidity crisis.

The verdict stemmed from a lawsuit Liberty Media brought in 2003, accusing Vivendi of waiting until its transaction with USA Networks and Liberty Media officially closed before reacting publicly to a downgrade of its debt rating and addressing concerns about liquidity. Vivendi said that it would appeal the verdict, using “all available paths of action to overturn the verdict or reduce the damages award.”

Liberty Media said it planned to seek interest payments on the verdict amount.

 

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