Vivendi SA, debating how to spend what remains of the $14 billion from asset sales after cutting debt, is done with big acquisitions for now as the board favors returning surplus cash to investors in the next six months.
Vivendi SA Chief Executive Officer Jean-Bernard Levy’s ouster, triggered by a clash with the board over strategy, clears the way for a potential reorganization of Europe’s biggest media and telecommunications company.
Jean-Bernard Levy, the Vivendi SA chief executive officer who has resisted investor calls for a reorganization to revive a stock trading near a nine-year low, is preparing to step down, said people familiar with the matter.
Vivendi SA Chief Executive Officer Jean-Bernard Levy ’s 7.95 billion-euro ($11.3 billion) SFR deal, his largest, gives him full ownership of the company’s biggest cash generator and completes a decade-long effort to break from its messy past.
Vivendi SA ’s Universal Music Group, home to artists such as Lady Gaga and Mariah Carey , is targeting broadband users in emerging markets like Brazil by signing deals with phone providers there to carry online music services.
Thales SA, Europe’s biggest defense electronics maker, named Jean-Bernard Levy as chief executive officer to succeed Luc Vigneron, who was ousted by the French state and Dassault Aviation SA, the primary shareholders.