Spanish telecommunications giant Telefónica SA has acquired an 11.1% stake in Italian media firm Mediaset’s pay-TV business Mediaset Premium, in exchange for a cash injection of US$136 million.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Telefónica is the first suitor the Italian pay-TV business has courted to invest in the money-losing Mediaset Premium, with Al Jazeera and Vivendi also being mentioned as possible investors.
The agreement between Telefónica and Mediaset sports an equity value of US$1.23 billion in a new company that will hold Mediaset’s pay-TV business, and is the second agreement between the two media entities: just five days ago, Telefónica agreed to pay US$401 million for Mediaset’s 22% stake in Spanish pay-TV platform Digital Plus.
Mediaset Premium’s 2013 subscription revenue was US$750.6 million, up 6% from 2012. Advertising revenue was not disclosed.