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Vivendi, Tencent deal chatter; SoftBank's ¥400B bond sale; Apple probe in Japan


* French media conglomerate Vivendi SA has begun talks with Tencent Holdings Ltd. for the sale of a 10% stake in Universal Music Group Inc. A deal would give Universal Music a preliminary equity valuation of €30 billion for 100% of the music company. Under the preliminary talks, Tencent will also be given a one-year call option to acquire an additional 10% for the same price once the transaction pushes through.

* SoftBank Group Corp. is looking to raise up to ¥400 billion through a domestic bond sale, Bloomberg News reported, citing people with knowledge of the matter. The Japanese conglomerate also led a US$200 million investment in Boston-based antivirus startup Cybereason Inc. and picked up an 8.1% stake in Brazilian digital bank Banco Inter SA for about 760 million reais.

* The Japan Fair Trade Commission launched a probe to determine whether Apple Inc. violated anti-monopoly rules by forcing local companies to provide technology and intellectual property free of charge, The Mainichi reported.


* Japan Display Inc. will postpone the release of its first-quarter earnings results to Aug. 9 from the original Aug. 7 schedule as the embattled display maker is still in the process of finalizing a bailout plan from a consortium led by China-based Harvest Tech Investment Management.

* London-based video analytics startup Streamhub launched a cross-industry data management platform for online video called "catch-an" in Japan.


* South Korea's Ministry of Science and ICT plans to invest 19.8 billion won to support 5G-based virtual reality and augmented reality businesses, Chosun Biz reported.

* KT Corp. opened a dedicated cloud service for the financial market in compliance with security guidelines from local regulator Financial Supervisory Service, ZDNet Korea reported.

* LG Electronics Inc. sent a video invitation to global media outlets hinting that the company will unveil its next flagship smartphone at the IFA 2019 technology trade show in Berlin in September, ET News reported. The video implied that LG's upcoming smartphone will have an upgraded dual-screen function.

* Korea Communications Commission said the TV co-production deal that it signed with the Vietnamese Ministry of Information and Communications is now in effect, iNews 24 reported. Under the agreement, TV programs co-produced by South Korea and Vietnam will be considered and regulated as local programs in both countries.


* Tencent is in talks to invest up to US$1.5 billion in short-video platform Kuaishou, TechNode reported, citing Chinese financial blog IPO Zaozhidao. The development comes shortly after Tencent removed restrictions on using Kuaishou within its WeChat app.

* OPPO has reached patent transfer agreements with Intel Corp. and Ericsson. OPPO's deal with Intel involves 58 patents related to cellular mobile communications technology, while OPPO's agreement with Ericsson covers more than 500 patents in the U.S., Europe, India and China.

* Sprint Corp. is adding a device from Chinese smartphone maker OnePlus Technology (Shenzhen) Co. Ltd. to its lineup of 5G devices. Sprint said it will soon provide additional information, including device specifications, pricing and launch date.

* Lenovo Group Ltd. and Intel announced a multiyear collaboration to accelerate the convergence of high-performance computing and artificial intelligence.


* Chinese officials warned of imposing "reverse sanctions" on Indian companies operating in China if Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. was prohibited from doing business in India due to pressure from the U.S., Reuters reported, citing sources privy to the matter. India has yet to decide on inviting Huawei to participate in its 5G network trials set to take place in the next few months.

* Dish TV India Ltd., Airtel Digital TV, and Warburg Pincus LLC have reached a merger agreement, with a formal deal expected to be announced in the next four to six weeks, The Economic Times (India) reported, citing people familiar with the matter. Early this year, it was reported that Bharti Airtel Ltd. formed a consortium with Singtel and Warburg Pincus in a bid to acquire a majority stake in Dish TV.


* Ringier AG's Vietnamese unit sold its Marry Network to Singapore-based health technology company Hello Health Group Pte. Ltd. for an undisclosed sum. The deal includes two Vietnam-based digital platforms: parenting-focused and wedding-centered

* Ajay Arora, director of product innovation at Netflix Inc., said the company is in discussions with state-owned mobile operator Telkom Indonesia to unblock the video streaming platform in Indonesia, CNN Indonesia reported.

* VNG Corp.'s Zalo, a Vietnamese messaging app that recently launched a social media network, filed for a permit to operate as a social media service after local regulators ordered to take down Zalo's domains as the company is only licensed to operate as an over-the-top service, according to DealStreetAsia.

* Thailand's National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission launched a new anti-piracy team dedicated to tackling the illegal streaming of the English Premier League, Post Today reported. The regulator will work with the police and internet service providers to ensure that websites hosting illegal Premier League streams are shut down within two days.

* LINE Corp.'s Thailand unit officially launched its LINE Shopping platform after a four-month trial period, Prachachat reported. LINE Shopping functions as a price comparison platform for 15 online retailers, including Lazada South East Asia Pte. Ltd., Shopee Ltd. and Asia Books Co. Ltd.


* Southern Cross Media Group Ltd. agreed to outsource its television and radio broadcast transmission services to Broadcast Australia Pty. Ltd. The agreement is for an initial term of 15 years, pursuant to which Southern Cross Media will transfer transmission assets to Broadcast Australia. In return, Broadcast Australia will provide Southern Cross Media with managed and maintenance services for over 500 radio and TV transmission services across the country.

* Dentsu X Australia appointed Daniel Isaac as CEO, effective October. Isaac joins Dentsu Aegis Network Ltd. from United, a media agency owned by Omnicom Media Group Holdings Inc., where he was managing director.

* Spark New Zealand Ltd. added Heather Polglase to the Spark Leadership Squad, naming her the group human resources director, effective Sept. 1. Polglase, who joined the company in 2013, will succeed Joe McCollum, who is stepping down after seven years in the role.


5G Focus: Verizon rollout; Vodafone/TIM network deal; partnerships in China: 5G Focus is a weekly global roundup of notable 5G trials, launches, use cases and major equipment supply contracts. It also features in-depth analysis of strategies, expansion plans, business models and other related initiatives.


Wireless Investor: China leads rise of mobile 'super apps': While mobile users elsewhere across the globe use dedicated apps for specific tasks, mobile users in the Asia-Pacific region are accustomed to performing multiple, often seemingly unrelated functions with a single "super app."

Global Multichannel: Global markets update — Singapore: Kagan has recently updated Global Multichannel and Broadband analyses for Singapore, as well as analyses for related operators Singtel and StarHub.


Discovery looks to add food to its streaming service menu: CEO David Zaslav also told analysts on the company's earnings call that 5G technology will boost transaction opportunities.

Nozomi Ibayashi, Myungran Ha, Emily Lai, Ed Eduard and Patrick Tibke contributed to this report. The Daily Dose has an editorial deadline of 7 a.m. Hong Kong time. Some external links may require a subscription. Links are current as of publication time, and we are not responsible if those links are unavailable later.