French media and communications group Vivendi will have to wait until after the summer to learn the outcome of a court case which will decide whether it needs to reduce its influence at Telecom Italia (TIM) or Italian pay-TV provider Mediaset. Last year Italy’s Communications Regulatory Authority (Autorita per le Garanzie nelle Comunicazioni, Agcom) told Vivendi to cut its interest in one of the companies due to fears of a concentration of power, but Vivendi – which owns a 24% stake in TIM and 28.8% of Mediaset – appealed against the ruling. Reuters cites an unnamed legal source as saying: ‘There will be a decision no earlier than 45 days, but probably after the summer.’
Vivendi has also said that it will take its fight to the European Commission if its Italian legal challenge fails. One of Vivendi’s lawyers, Giuseppe Scassellati Sforzolini, commented: ‘Vivendi has not presented a complaint to the EC because it has full confidence in Italy’s justice system which applies EU laws. But if that is not the case we will call on the Commission.’ Earlier this year the French group transferred a 19.19% interest in Mediaset to a trust company in order to comply with Agcom’s ruling pending the court judgement.