Vivendi seeks USD3bn damages for PTC

17 Mar 2008

French telecoms and media group Vivendi is seeking around EUR1.9 billion (USD3 billion) in damages as part of its long-running dispute over ownership of mobile phone operator Polska Telefonia Cyfrowa (PTC). The legal claim was detailed in Vivendi’s 2007 annual report, published last week. ‘Vivendi accuses the republic of Poland of having violated its commitments on the protection and equal treatment of foreign investors,’ the report says.

Vivendi is locked in a long-running legal battle with Deutsche Telekom over control of PTC. Each company has sued the other for billions of euros in courts in Europe and the US. Vivendi owns 51% of Elektrim Telekomunikacja (Telco), which directly and indirectly owned 51% of PTC. Deutsche Telekom owns 49% of PTC and claims to have exercised a call option on a further 48% it says was owned by Polish conglomerate Elektrim. It consolidates PTC’s results fully in its accounts. Vivendi argues that Elektrim had no right to sell the stake, on the basis that it actually belongs not to Elektrim but to Telco.