Vivendi explores London listing for streaming service Canal+

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French media conglomerate Vivendi is exploring a London listing for its Canal+ streaming service in a potential boost to the UK’s struggling capital markets.

Vivendi announced in December that it planned to split into separate business units. It is now looking at various listing options for all four entities it plans to create, including Canal+ and its Havas advertising business. Billionaire Vincent Bolloré is Vivendi’s largest shareholder.

London was one possible listing venue for Canal+ and no final decision had been made, according to people familiar with internal discussions. Vivendi could also list the business in Amsterdam, one of the people said.

The board of Vivendi has not yet reached a final agreement on the four-way split of the group, which aims to address a large discount between its share price and the value of its businesses.

Yannick Bolloré, Vincent’s son who runs Vivendi, told the Financial Times last month that there were “no major obstacles right now” to the split, however, with Vivendi’s management expected to submit final plans to its supervisory board in the coming months.

Bolloré has also said that a decision was required about where to list Havas after the break-up. Less than a fifth of the advertising group’s business is based in France.

The majority of Canal+ viewers would also be outside France after it takes over MultiChoice, Africa’s largest pay-television operator, one person close to the discussions said.

A listing for Canal+ in London or Amsterdam would give it more access to international capital than Euronext in Paris where Vivendi is currently listed, they added.

Vivendi has committed to a secondary listing in South Africa for Canal+ as part of the deal to buy MultiChoice, regardless of the market it chooses for its primary listing.

After a significant slowdown in European initial public offerings during the past two years, there has been a recovery in 2024. However, the biggest IPOs have taken place in markets other than London, which has remained quiet.

Online fast-fashion giant Shein is also exploring a public listing in London.

Vivendi declined to comment. Bloomberg first reported on the possibility of a UK listing for Canal+.

Additional reporting by Adrienne Klasa

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