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Vivendi readies new Mediaset Premium offer; Amazon UK fined for aviation safety breach

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Vivendi readies new Mediaset Premium offer; Amazon UK fined for aviation safety breach

TOP NEWS

* VivendiSA is preparing to submit a new bid for the Italian MediasetPremium pay TV service by the end of the week of Sept. 26, Reuters reports,citing a source close to the matter. The new conditions could end the disputebetween the French firm and Mediaset SpA. The offer is expected to divide thecapital of Mediaset Premium between Mediaset, Vivendi and a third party, likelyan investment fund.

* ALondon judge slapped Amazon.comInc. with a fine of £65,000 plus an additional £60,000 forprosecution costs, for breaching aviation safety laws, The Guardian of London reports.Judge Michael Grieve of the Southwark crown court reportedly said Amazoncontinued shipping dangerous goods via airmail, despite repeated warnings.

AND IRELAND

*Telefónica SArecruited Barclays, UBS and Morgan Stanley, among others, to lead the plannedIPO of its British mobile operator unit O2, TheDaily Telegraph of London reports,citing senior sources. The O2 IPO is expected to take place either before theend of 2016 or early 2017.

*Many customers of BritishTelecom's BT Broadband and Sky plc's Sky Broadband could be affected by 's securitybreach, as the latterprovides webmail hosting services to both companies, The Guardian reports.The specific number of those affected among BT and Sky customers has yet to bedetermined, yet a BT spokesperson reportedly said a minority of their BTBroadband customers have a legacy email product from the U.S. tech firm.

*British BroadcastingCorp. is experimenting with holographic technology via a TV devicethat projects holograms of BBC archival footage, the British public broadcastersaid in a blogpost. BBC head of digital partnerships Cyrus Saihan is leading efforts on theproject, with the help of U.K.-based visual effects and hologram specialistfirm MDH Hologram.   

, SWITZERLAND AND AUSTRIA

* AxelSpringer SE will buy another 39% of the shares of Car&BoatMedia from French media company Spir Communication, according to a news release.Car&Boat Media owns La Centrale, the largest online car portal in Franceand other online portals specializing in cars and boats.

* RTLGroup will not challenge a lawsuit in the Higher AdministrativeCourt in Germany, Werben und Verkaufenreports.The German private television channel lost an earlier lawsuit for productplacement of a Bahlsen chocolate bar in a 2014 episode of "Ich bin einStar - Holt mich hier raus!"

* Telekom Deutschland appointed Walter Goldenits as itsdirector of technology, effective January 2017, succeeding BrunoJacobfeuerborn, who will transfer to Deutsche Telekom AG, according to a news release. Goldenits willalso take over a leading management position on the newly established board inthe area of technology and innovation.

* Swiss citizens voted in favor of stricter supervision oftheir telephone and online communications in a Sept. 25 referendum, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reports.Initial calculations by polling firm gfs.bern showed that 66% voted in favor ofthe law, which had already been through parliament, to help the FederalIntelligence Service in Switzerland fight terrorism.

* SFR launchedits premium sports channel SFR SPORT4K on Sept. 24. The channel kicked off withtwo Premier league football matches and a Premiership Rugby game.

* Ubisoft announcedan agreement with the Banque Publique d'Investissement (Bpifrance) for thepurchase of 3,625,178 Ubisoft shares held by Bpifrance, at a price of €33.80per share, representing a total amount of €122.5 million. These shares will beallocated to employee shareholding plans and may be used to fund potentialexternal growth operations.

* Canal PlusSA channel Seasons will debut in Canada, accordingto Satellifax. The channel, dedicated to hunting, fishing and nature, will beavailable via the cable operator Cogeco Cable Inc., and will be on view on Bell Fibe TV,CCAP and Sogetel from October.

* MFP, a subsidiary of France Télévisions SA, launched three newproduction labels: Dalva Productions, Salsa Productions and Epeios Productions.The units will create fictional content related to society and drama, wacky orunusual programs and a daily soap opera, respectively.

* BouyguesTelecom unbundled 20 telephone exchanges (NRA) in August, accordingto BBox News. Unbundling the exchanges allows Bouygues to offer servicesdirectly without going through the partner networks Axione, and SFR.

, BELGIUM ANDLUXEMBOURG

*Telegraaf Media Groep is facing budget cuts of €125 million, more than thecompany announced in an earlier news release, Financieele Dagblad reports.In July, TMG revealed that a 20% cost decrease would be necessary, but has nowreportedly raised the target to 25%.

*Dutch public broadcaster NOS merged its multiple smart TV apps into a singleNOS app, MediaMagazine reports.With the app, users will now be able to view all recently broadcast TVprograms, and in some specific cases, access live broadcasts.

*KPN NV released itsnew exclusive series "Dochters" for on-demand viewing, TotaalTV reports.Like Liberty Globalplc's ZiggoNV, KPN continues to invest in providing excusive content to itscustomers, reportedly part of an attempt to maintain its existing customer baseand gain new subscribers.

*Amsterdam-based radio channel Radio Atlantis terminated its medium wavefrequency broadcasts on Sept. 26, and will again prioritize internetbroadcasting, MediaMagazine reports.According to employees, the station's temporary medium wave frequencybroadcasting was a result of internal dissent at the Radio Atlantis station inDutch province Friesland.

NORDIC COUNTRIES

* TelenorASA saw its share price drop by 0.9% after the telco lost 3 billionNorwegian kroner on the sale of 142.5 million shares, reportsAffärsvärlden. Telenorannounced its intention to divest its holding in VimpelCom about a year ago.

* HuaweiTechnologies Co. Ltd. is expanding to more locations in Sweden. TheChinese company currently has office operations in six cities across Sweden,while rival EricssonAB has activities in four of these same cities, Dagens Nyheter reports.

* A regional investment group is expected to bid to acquirenewspaper publisher Stampen Ab, reportsDagens Nyheter.Stampen's decision to fund acquisitions using costly bank loans reportedlyhastened the Swedish publishing firm's slide into debt.

SOUTHERN EUROPE

* U.S. private equity firm BlackRock increased its stake inTelecom Italia SpA toabout 5.04%, Telecompaper reports,citing Corriere della Sera. BlackRockreportedly holds the stake via 16 asset management companies.

* Spanish subscription video-on-demand service Filminlaunched an app for SonyCorp.'s PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 consoles, Rapid TV News reports.The app will enable Filmin users to access both the SVOD platform and thepay-per-view catalog of more than 9,000 titles.

* Portuguese telecom regulator ANACOM opened a publicconsultation on its decision to award frequencies in digital terrestrial TVmultiplexer A to MEO, owned by Altice NV's PT Portugal. Interested parties will be able to submittheir comments until Oct. 21, Telecompaper reports.

EASTERN EUROPE

* Three Kazakh businessmen led the purchase of Russianonline video service Nemo TV for an undisclosed sum, Telecompaper reports,citing Kommersant. Erzhan Isabayev,German Nurbayev and Talgat Shakenov, plus shareholders of Kazakh satelliteoperator Caspio HD, bought 100% of shares in legal entities controlling Nemo TV.

* Polsat Group selected the first four original film and TVproductions that will become part of its Cyfrowa Strefa Twórców project,Digital TV Europe reports.The Polish broadcaster committed to providing financial, sales and copyrightprotection support for the proposed titles under the initiative.

* AkadoTelecom is planning to increase the capacity of its virtual datacenter by 400% to 1,000 TB by 2018, Telecompaper reports,citing Cnews.ru. The Russian fixed operator will use Huawei's FusionCube andVMware Inc's vSpherevirtualization platforms for the data center services.  

* Ukraine's parliament adopted changes to its law on statesupport of cinema, allowing feature film producers to apply for funding of asmuch as 80% of the production budget, up from the previous 50%. TV seriesproducers are also entitled to get funding of up to 50% of production expenses,Broadband TV News reports.

FEATURED NEWS

MarketWeek:Twitter M&A rumors, political ad revisions rock media stocks: Afresh rumor about a potential Twitter sale sparked some investor excitementlate in the week ended Sept. 23, which also saw some turmoil in networkoperator shares following a downward revision of political advertisingforecasts.

CapitolConnection: Wheeler's final months: With FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler'stenure winding down, SNL Kagan reviews the major regulatory orders that willdefine his legacy, and considers which, if any, is likely to survive.

FEATURED RESEARCH

: With OTT and VSPservices nipping at their heels, multichannel video providers are quicklygetting their act together and trying to find ways to improve customerstickiness and reduce churn.

: With FOX News in themidst of management turmoil, James Murdoch went on the offensive at the GoldmanSachs 2016 Communacopia Conference.

: Desktop content viewingfor broadcast nets was a mixed bag in the second quarter, as the number ofunique viewers was broadly more positive than the minutes viewed metric for thegroup, according to comScore Video Metrix data.

: Nielsendiscussed the recently announced rollout schedule for its multiplatform ratingssystem and challenges facing subscription video-on-demand measurement at theGoldman Sachs Communacopia Conference.

: Financing is available for conservatively leveraged radiocompanies to make deals, although at lower multiples than most sellers arewilling to accept, while consolidation among the larger groups is hampered byoverleverage at the top two operators, restricting supply in the overall radiodeal market.

: Along with the rise of over-the-top services, weakeninglegacy multichannel video affordability typically is seen as the main drivingforce behind cord cutting.

Amanda Kelly, Koen Pijnappelsand Gerard O'Dwyer contributed to this report. The Daily Dose has an editorialdeadline of 7 a.m. London time. Some external links may require a subscription.