Vivendi chief tries to reassure executives over potential beIN Sports France deal

Vivendi chairman Vincent Bolloré has held a meeting with leading French football executives in an effort to reassure them over a potential collaboration between the media company and pay-television broadcaster beIN Sports France, according to reports.

Vivendi has held talks about a possible carriage deal with beIN Sports France that could include the acquisition of a stake in the pay-television broadcaster. Negotiations began in mid-January with the deal being proposed by Bolloré in an attempt to safeguard Vivendi’s pay-television channel Canal Plus – a major sports broadcaster in France that has suffered since the emergence of beIN Sports France.

Bolloré met several executives, including Frédéric Thiriez, the president of the French professional football league, to explain how the deal between the two rivals may not have a negative impact on the league or its clubs. The meeting took place at Vivendi’s headquarters on Friday.

French daily newspaper L’Equipe said that talks over a deal are at an advanced stage, but any agreement would be analysed by the country’s competition regulator, the Autorité de la Concurrence.