PPF Group, through subsidiaries, has signed an agreement with Central European Media Enterprises (CME) to acquire it fully.
CME shareholders must approve the deal, as well as the European Commission and national regulators in some countries where CME operates. CME operates television stations in Bulgaria, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, and the Czech Republic, where it owns TV Nova.
In connection with this transaction, CME will convene an Extraordinary General Meeting to approve the proposed merger. The approval of the European Commission and the relevant national regulators is also required. The approval process will take several months, which means that signing the agreement is only PPF’s first step towards taking over CME.
CTK estimates the purchase at USD 2.1 billion (approximately CZK 48.4 billion).
CME is one of the leading media and entertainment companies in Central and Eastern Europe. It broadcasts on 30 television channels, both in the freely available and paid channels, and reaches 45 million viewers. The trend of linking media content creation and entertainment with its distribution over telecommunications networks has been evident for several years in both Europe and the US.
BNP Paribas and Société Générale act as PPF advisors on structured financing of the acquisition. BNP Paribas, Crédit Agricole CIB, Credit Suisse, HSBC, Société Générale and UniCredit finance the transaction of € 1.15 billion.
PPF Group invests in several industries ranging from financial services through telecommunications, biotechnology, real estate to engineering. PPF operates in Europe, Asia, and North America. The Group owns assets of more than EUR 45 billion (CZK 1.16 trillion).
Part of CME in the Czech Republic is CET 21, which holds broadcasting licenses for Nova, Nova Cinema, Nova Sport, Nova 2, Nova Action, Nova Gold, and Nova International.