Last week an Amsterdam court suspended Mediaset Group’s planned merger of its Italian and Spanish operations to create a Dutch ‘HoldCo’ Media-For-Europe (MFE) following an appeal proceeding brought by Vivendi against the first-level verdict in favour of Mediaset Group.
The Amsterdam court will pronounce its decision on September 1st.
A report from investment analysts at Deutsche Bank says: “This is negative for Mediaset Group and its Spanish subsidiary Mediaset Espana as the latest legal development in the Netherland would delay their proposed MFE deal.”
“As a reminder, the two companies were hopeful of closing their MFE merger in the next few days after receiving the final approval from the Spanish courts. MFE had already received regulatory approval in Italy and the Netherlands (until the current appeal was brought by Vivendi). The latest development thus raises fresh questions on their ability to complete the deal after another legal challenge from Vivendi,” says the bank.
“We believe a legal resolution is favourable to the merging entities (i.e. Mediaset and MSE) where MFE continuing as planned would allow the combined group to realize modest synergies. We also think Vivendi, which owns a 28.8 per cent stake in Mediaset and is the second-largest shareholder after Fininvest, might still try to find an agreement to exit Mediaset at a premium to its current price,” suggests Deutsche Bank.