Lisa Lacy
Dec 15, 2023

Vivendi considers spinning off Havas

The France-based media giant is also thinking about splitting off other business units

Vivendi considers spinning off Havas

French media giant Vivendi is considering splitting off multiple business units, including the agency holding company Havas. 

Vivendi’s supervisory board has given approval to a plan to separately list each company—Havas, media brand Canal+ Group and an investment company—on the stock market.

The decision comes as each business unit is “experiencing strong growth in an international context marked by numerous investment opportunities,” Vivendi said in a statement. 

The proposal would leave Vivendi with a portfolio that includes film production company Studiocanal, TV production company Banijay, magazine publisher Prisma Media and mobile game developer Gameloft.

According to the statement, Havas has 23,000 employees in more than 100 countries. Its Q3 revenue was up 4.5% driven by growth in Latin America. New business during the period included its controversial win of Shell’s global media business.

In late October, Havas claimed to be “best in class” among the major marketing services holding companies, after organic revenue increased by 4.5% in Q3. Europe was up 1.5%, North America 3.0% and Asia-Pacific 2.0% in the period. LatAm surged 51.1%, which Havas credited to its strong market position and management in the region and its long legacy in media buying.

Havas’ holdings include several creative networks under the Havas branding, such as Havas Creative, as well as Arnold and Battery. It also owns the Havas PR Collective, which includes agency brands such as Abernathy MacGregor, Havas Formula and República Havas.

Vivendi said in the statement that Havas has “maintained a steady pace of targeted acquisitions over the past two years, thereby strengthening its range of expertise and geographic footprint, [which]...paves the way for an accelerated development and the continuation of its successful transformation.”

Canal+ Group has 25 million subscribers in nearly 50 countries and is “well-positioned to capitalise on further consolidation opportunities on a global scale” after acquiring Luxembourg-based TV provider M7 and global media company SPI, Vivendi said in a statement. Canal+ has taken stakes in South African satellite TV service Multichoice, Hong Kong-based streaming service Viu and Scandinavian streaming platform Viaplay.

Vivendi would also spin off an investment company with stakes in the culture, media and entertainment sectors, including a majority stake in publisher and travel retailer Lagardère Group.

In 2021, Vivendi divested a majority stake in music giant Universal Music Group.

Since then, the company has seen its valuation decline “substantially,” which the release said “thereby [limits] its ability to carry out external growth transactions for its subsidiaries.”

(This article first appeared on CampaignLive.com)

Source:
Campaign India

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