Viaplay Group Shares Surge as Vivendi’s Canal+ Takes 12% Stake

by Warren Seah

Shares in Viaplay Group skyrocketed on Friday as Vivendi’s Canal+ announced that it had acquired a 12% stake in the Nordic streaming company.

At 0811 GMT, Viaplay’s shares saw a 26% increase, reaching SEK44.10. This recovery follows the significant losses suffered by the stock on Thursday, when the company disclosed funding issues and unveiled a major strategic reset along with its second-quarter results.

Vivendi, on the other hand, experienced a 1.7% increase, trading at EUR8.52.

Canal+ did not disclose the amount paid for the stake. However, based on Viaplay’s closing price on Thursday, it would be valued at 332.5 million Swedish kronor ($32.1 million). Up until Thursday, Viaplay’s shares had fallen by 82% since the start of the year.

Before Canal+’s stake was revealed, Viaplay had stated that it was exploring various options including content sublicensing, asset disposals, equity injections, or the sale of the entire group. The company also highlighted its intention to focus on its core Nordic, Netherlands, and Viaplay Select operations while downsizing, partnering, or exiting its other international markets such as the U.S., the U.K., and Canada.

Citi analysts Thomas Singlehurst and Praveen Shetty commented in a research note that “this announcement will potentially increase the probability the market applies to the potential for a full takeout of the business or at least a speedy resolution to the decision to aggressively restructure its portfolio.”

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