French commercial TV group M6 has acquired Lagardère’s FTA and pay-TV Networks – with the exception of classical music and ballet channel Mezzo – for €215 million.
The groups have been in talks since January and it was anticipated that the deal would involve the full takeover of FTA DTT kids channel Gulli, along with pay-TV, pre-school services Canal J and TiJi, as well as entertainment and music channels Elle Girl TV, MCM, RFM TV and MCM Top.
The deal, which is placed under “conditions precedent ” according to M6, also includes all replay services such as Gulli Replay and SVoD platform GulliMax.
Lagardère’s TV businesses posted global revenues of €98 million in 2017, and EBIT at €20.6 million.
M6 Group will merge the TV advertising and international distribution activities. The commercialisation of TV channels abroad is mostly driven by the distribution of Gulli Africa, Gulli Bil Arabia, Gulli Girl and TiJi Russia. They are broadcast in French-speaking Africa, Middle East and in the Russian-speaking area.
M6 Group, which already owns FTA DTT channels M6, W9 and 6ter, and pay-TV networks Paris Première, Téva, M6 Music and half of Série Club, considers this acquisition as “an opportunity to expand its kids and families offering as well as strengthening its global positions on the French media market”, both for TV advertising and in the digital environment thanks to the non-linear and SVoD strength of Gulli brand.
Reaching 91 countries, Lagardère’s TV scope will help M6 Group to expand its activities internationally.
The takeover still has to be approved by TV regulator CSA and Competition Authorities.