News reports quote Vivendi CEO Jean-Bernard Levy as saying he’ll “make the decision in the next 2 or 3 weeks, so you will hear about it shortly” whether to sell its 20% holding in NBC Universal. He acknowledged it’s not a long-term investment even though “right now, considering the general expectations for the value of the assets, the dividend flow we get from NBCU is very good”. Vivendi’s option to sell a max $4 billion of NBCU shares runs from November 15th to the Friday of the first week of December. But GE can preempt it by buying back the stake which GE chief Jeff Immelt has said as recently as this week he “would do in a heartbeat”. Vivendi obtained the stake in 2004 when it sold its Universal Studios, USA and SciFi Networks, and other media assets assets to GE.
Vivendi Hints At NBC Universal Stake Sale
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