Vivendi Universal chief executive Jean-Bernard Levy has confirmed that the group has offered EUR650 million to buy Elektrim’s 49% stake in Telco, the holding company that owns a majority 51% stake in Polska Telefonia Cyfrowa (PTC), Poland’s major mobile telecoms operator. Vivendi’s offer is the latest round in the long-running battle with Deutsche Telekom for control of PTC, in which Deutsche Telekom holds the remaining 49% stake.
In 1999 when Vivendi raised its stake in Telco to 49% from 30%, its partner Elektrim also announced the transfer of its direct 51% stake in PTC to Telco. However, Deutsche Telekom, which had a call option to buy Elektrim’s PTC stake, said the transfer of the PTC stake to Telco was illegal. A Warsaw court sided with Deutsche Telekom earlier this year, and ruled that Elektrim still owned the direct stake in PTC. Vivendi has appealed the ruling, and has said that it intends to expand its business in Poland.