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Canal+ raises buyout offer for South Africa’s MultiChoice

FRENCH media group Vivendi’s Canal+ has raised its offer to buy all the shares of South Africa’s MultiChoice that it does not already own, the companies said.

Canal+, the biggest shareholder in MultiChoice, will offer 125 rand per share, valuing the pending shares at about 33.7 billion rand ($1.77 billion) according to Reuters calculations, after its previous offer of 105 rand was rejected last month.

Maxime Saada, chairman and CEO of Canal+, told Reuters on Tuesday that the French company had engaged with the board of Africa’s biggest pay-TV company to determine a reasonable price that would lead them to resume talks.

“It was clear that at that price we would get management and board support,” Saada said, adding that the new price offered “a fair value”.

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Shares in MultiChoice were up 4.04% to 113 rand at 0920 GMT.

On Monday, Canal+ said it would make a firm offer by no later than April 8, after the Takeover Regulations Panel said it should immediately announce one because its 35.01% shareholding in MultiChoice triggered a mandatory offer requirement.

MultiChoice had said the 105 rand per share offer significantly undervalued the group.

Both companies said they intend to co-operate and MultiChoice will give exclusivity undertakings to Canal+.

Once the mandatory offer is made, MultiChoice will form an independent board that will, after receiving an opinion from an independent expert, provide its view and recommendation on the offer, the companies said.

READ:  South Africa's MultiChoice rejects Vivendi's Canal Plus buyout offer
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By NQOBILE DLUDLA

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