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French regulator to probe proposed beIN Sports France-Vivendi tie-up

France’s competition authority, l'Autorité de la Concurrence, will scrutinise a proposed collaboration between media company Vivendi and pay-television broadcaster beIN Sports France, according to reports in the country.

According to reports in France, Vivendi is in advanced talks with beIN Sports France for an exclusive carriage deal that could include the acquisition of a stake in the pay-television broadcaster. The deal has been proposed by Vivendi chairman Vincent Bolloré in an attempt to safeguard Vivendi’s pay-television channel Canal Plus – a major sports broadcaster in France that has lost sports rights since the emergence of beIN Sports France.

The regulator is reportedly ready to launch a ‘market test’ to survey stakeholders about the proposed deal. Representatives of the two parties in the potential deal have already met the authority, reports added.

Last week, it was reported that Bolloré held a meeting with leading French football executives in an effort to reassure them that the potential deal would not lead to leagues and clubs losing media-rights income.