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European deals through Sept. 23: Monster Worldwide, Vivendi, Telecom Italia


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European deals through Sept. 23: Monster Worldwide, Vivendi, Telecom Italia

The European edition ofM&A Replay presents a weekly wrap-up of European media and communicationsdeal announcements, completions and updates.


*Randstad North America Inc. unit Merlin Global Acquisition Inc. its tender offer forthe outstanding shares of common stock of Monster Worldwide Inc. to accommodate completion of theEuropean Commission's regulatory review of the deal, according to a Sept. 23 news release.The offer's expiry date has been moved to Oct. 28 from Oct. 3. The EuropeanCommission is expected to complete its review by Oct. 26. As of 5 p.m. ET onSept. 22, about 6,048 shares of common stock of Monster have been validlytendered and not properly withdrawn, representing less than 1% of theoutstanding shares of common stock, Broadridge Corporate Issuer Solutions Inc.,the depositary for the offer, said. Randstad North America is a unit of the Netherlands-basedRandstad Holding NV.

M&A Media

*Vivendi SA ispreparing to submit anew bid for MediasetSpA's pay TV business Mediaset Premium by the end of the week ofSept. 26, Reuters reported Sept. 23, citing a source close to the matter. TheFrench media group reportedly wants an equal three-way ownership split ofMediaset Premium between Vivendi, Mediaset and a third party, most likely aninvestment fund. Another option would be for Mediaset and Vivendi to each get40% of Mediaset Premium, with the third party securing the remaining 20%.Several investment funds have expressed interest in the new offer, according tothe report. A second source familiar with the matter said Mediaset's board willtalk about the disputed deal when it meets Sept. 27.

*Mediaset and Vivendi could also reach a compromise, including a lower valuation ofMediaset Premium, in order to avoid a lengthy legal battle, Telecompaperreported Sept. 22, citing unnamed sources mentioned by MF Online. Mediaset andits majority shareholder Fininvest are suing Vivendi for failing to honor termsof the original deal, which involves a full takeover of Mediaset Premium.

M&A Communications

*U.S. private equity firm BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in to about 5.04%,Telecompaper reported Sept. 23, citing Corrieredella Sera. The investment company holds the stake in the Italian operatorvia 16 asset management companies, according to the report.

*The Swedish Competition Authority gave the thumbs up to Com Hem's proposed acquisition of Boxer TV-Access AB,according to a Sept. 22 news release. Com Hem, which previously securedclearance from the Swedish government to buy the digital pay TV operator fromstate-owned Teracom Boxer Group AB, said that the deal is expected to becompleted soon.

*Starman AS-ownedCgates UAB Lithuanian telco TPG,following local antitrust approval, Broadband TV News reported Sept. 20, TPG operates under the Kateka, Elekta and Teletinklas brands inthe cities of Panevezys and Utmerge. Following the deal, Cgates' subscribersnow total 170,000 with the addition of 18,000 from TPG.