Vivendi to Pay $775 Million to Liberty Media to Settle Dispute

Updated on
  • Spat related to asset acquisition more than a decade ago
  • Liberty Media expects net proceeds of about $420 million

Vivendi SA paid Liberty Media Corp. $775 million to settle claims related to a dispute that arose from an asset deal between the companies more than a decade ago.

Liberty Media expects to net after-tax proceeds of about $420 million in cash, the company said Friday in a statement. Vivendi said it’ll have a positive cash impact of about 270 million euros ($297 million), as the settlement amount is less than a jury had previously awarded to Liberty Media.

The case stems from Vivendi’s 2001 purchase of Liberty Media’s stake in USA Networks Inc. Liberty Media claimed that Paris-based Vivendi misled it about a liquidity crisis at the company, artificially inflating the value of its shares, which it used to make the purchase. A jury had in 2013 awarded about 945 million euros to Liberty Media in the case, Vivendi said.

As a result of the settlement all appeals have been dismissed. Vivendi said it continues to maintain that it didn’t commit any wrongdoing.

Vivendi shares advanced 0.8 percent to 18.85 euros at 2:16 p.m. in Paris. Liberty Media rose 2.5 percent to $35.29 on Thursday in New York.

(Updates with case details in third paragraph.)
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