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Vivendi to permanently exit Fnac Darty interest

Vivendi is to permanently exit its ownership interest in Fnac Darty under the option it secured in January to exit from the company’s share capital.

Vivendi has opted to settle in shares the hedging transaction entered into in January 2018 regarding its 11% interest in Fnac Darty. The settlement will take place on July 10, 2018. On July 12, Vivendi will receive a cash payment of €267 million corresponding to the hedge price of €91 per share, after making an initial investment of €159 million, corresponding to €54 per share, in May 2016.

Vivendi said the pair would continue to develop partnerships with the entertainment and leisure products, consumer electronics and household appliances retailer.

The company said that it would pursue and reinforce operational synergies

tested over the past two years, including a ‘Canal corner’ in Fnac Darty retail stores.

Stéphane Roussel and Simon Gillham, who are members of the Vivendi management board, will remain members of Fnac Darty’s board.

“The work performed and the creativity shown by both teams demonstrate the range of possible co-operation between a company focused on content creation and entertainment and a European leader in the retail of cultural goods. We are very pleased to have been invited to remain on the Fnac Darty Board. We will continue our co-operation with the same enthusiasm,” said the pair in a prepared statement.

“Fnac Darty wishes to thank Vivendi for its involvement with the company at a key moment in its history. The two groups will continue to work together with pleasure,” said Jacques Veyrat, chairman of Fnac Darty.

Vivendi entered into a hedging transaction with Société Générale to protect the value of its 11% stake in the retail chain in January. The move, which caused Fnac Darty’s share to fall sharply at the time, meant that Vivendi ‘sold’ its shares in the outfit on a provisional bases, reserving the right to reacquire them or cash in by the second half of next year at the latest.