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Mediaset to withdraw and re-file merger plan

Part of ongoing legal battle over MediaForEurope

Italian broadcaster Mediaset has said it intends to withdraw its plan to merge its Italian and Spanish businesses, before re-filing it “to avoid any pretext for umpteenth legal proceeding by Vivendi.”

The two companies are locked in an ongoing legal battle over Mediaset’s plans to merge its Italian and Spanish operations under a new Dutch holding company named MediaForEurope.

Vivendi is opposed to the plan on grounds that it favours investment from a company owned by the Berlusconi family.

In a statement, Mediaset said it was forced to withdraw the plan for the time being because Vivendi’s lawyers claimed that the amended merger proposal breached articles of the Dutch Civil Code in that “it contains an entirely new supplement not made available to shareholders.”

However, Mediaset said it did not expect the new legal action from Vivendi to impede its plans, which it intends to file again after finalising all necessary checks with competent authorities.