Mediaset, Vivendi court case set for March 2017
September 16, 2016
From Branislav Pekic in Rome
A Milan judge will begin hearing two lawsuits for damages filed by Silvio Berlusconi’s Mediaset and Fininvest groups against French media giant Vivendi on March 21st 2017.
Last month, Berlusconi’s family holding company Fininvest requested €570 million in damages from Vivendi over an alleged failure to respect an April agreement to takeover Mediaset media group’s pay-TV unit Premium. Separately, Fininvest’s media unit Mediaset filed a suit against Vivendi for allegedly pulling out of the deal.
The reactions followed statements made in July by Vivendi that Mediaset’s business plan for Premium was “based on unrealistic assumptions”. It said that due diligence by Deloitte auditors in June deemed the business plan to be “unachievable”. However, Vivendi added it was open to discussing another agreement with the broadcaster.
The closure of the original agreement between Vivendi and Mediaset was expected on September 30th.
In related news, the CEO of Sky Italia, Andrea Zappia, denied a UBC report of possible interest by the pay-TV operator in Mediaset Premium.
Also, Disney Italia announced that Disney Channel and Disney Junior will no longer be distributed by Mediaset Premium from October 1st, due to a unilateral decision by the Italian pay-TV platform. The two channels will still be available on Sky Italia.
For its part, Mediaset Premium will substitute them with Premium Energy HD and Discovery Investigation.