French media group Vivendi has reportedly asked domestic telco Bouygues Telecom and Luxembourg-based investment fund Altice Group to submit final offers for its telecoms unit SFR by 12 March 2014, Bloomberg reports citing people familiar with the matter. According to the article, Vivendi’s board of directors is scheduled to meet this week to review the offers. A spokesman for Vivendi said its board will make a decision on SFR in due course, based on the full proposals provided by the bidders.
As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, last week Vivendi received two bids for France’s second largest mobile provider in terms of subscribers, from domestic broadband operator Numericable, majority owned by Altice Group, and Bouygues Telecom; both suitors have valued SFR at around EUR19 billion–EUR20 billion (USD26.08 billion–USD27.45 billion). Numericable has tabled a bid which consists of EUR11 billion in cash (comprising EUR8 billion in debt and EUR3 million via a capital increase) and 32% of the new merged entity. For its part, Bouygues Telecom’s proposal comprises EUR10.5 billion in cash and 46% of the share capital of the new entity. Further, Bouygues Telecom has promised to stage an initial public offering (IPO) for the new company ‘as soon as possible’, with Vivendi given the opportunity to sell an additional 15% stake in the enlarged company.