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Vivendi Investors Approve UMG Plans in Activist Rebuke

  • Bluebell Capital and Artisan Partners argued against spinoff
  • Activists argued buyback could allow Bollore to tighten grip
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Photographer: Patrick Hertzog/AFP/Getty Images
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Vivendi SE shareholders voted to approve the spinoff of Universal Music Group, paving the way for the world’s largest music company to be listed in Europe.

The French conglomerate is planning to offer shareholders stock in UMG, which would then be listed in Amsterdam by the end of September. Activists including Bluebell Capital Partners and Artisan Partners have been lobbying against the plan, saying it will lumber most shareholders with a heavy tax bill and needs to be organized differently.