Vivendi reportedly seeking to sell Watchever

WatcheverVivendi is looking to sell its German subscription video-on-demand service Watchever, according to a report in French financial daily Les Echos.

According to the report, Vivendi has asked Merrill Lynch to advise on a possible sale of the platform, which only launched last year.

According to the paper, Vincent Bolloré, who is due to take the helm as president of Vivendi supervisory board on June 24, has been concerned at the level of losses registered by Watchever. The unit turned in a loss of €66 million last year on revenues of €12 million, and losses for the first quarter o 2014 reached €21 million. The service is available for €8.99 a month but has used a large number of promotions to attract a user base of between 300,000 and 500,000, according to the report.

According to Les Echos, Vivendi has decided to seek a buyer ahead of Netflix’s launch of a German service later this year.

Bolloré is also reported to be unhappy that Watchever is owned by Vivendi directly rather than via its French pay TV unti Canal+, which would have been better-placed to contribute its expertise in building and marketing video services.