Canal+ to buy minority stake in PCCW’s Viu unit

The deal will help accelerate the growth of Viu’s content and its geographical reach, while bolstering Canal ’s presence in Asia. — Bloomberg

HONG KONG: Canal+, the French broadcaster owned by billionaire Vincent Bollore’s Vivendi SE, has agreed to buy a significant minority stake in Hong Kong-listed PCCW Ltd’s Viu unit as part of a partnership agreement between the two media groups.

The European firm paid US$200mil (RM927mil) for a 26.1% stake in Viu, an over-the-top video streaming platform available in Asia, the Middle East and South Africa, according to a statement yesterday.

The investment could swell to US$300mil (RM1.4bil) in total if certain conditions are met, giving Canal+ an option to further increase its stake to 51%, the statement showed. The deal will help accelerate the growth of Viu’s content and its geographical reach, while bolstering Canal+’s presence in Asia, according to the statement.

Viu had more than 66 million monthly active users and 12 million paid subscribers as of the end of 2022.

The platform’s offerings include South Korean content as well as its Viu Originals produced in markets including Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia.

“We are now looking forward to supporting Viu’s rapid growth over the coming years, including through synergies with our existing operations in Vietnam and Myanmar as well as in Africa and the Middle East,” Jacques du Puy, Canal+ International’s chief executive officer, said in the statement.

Viu is owned by PCCW, the Hong Kong telecommunications, media and technology conglomerate controlled by billionaire Richard Li. — Bloomberg

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