French pay TV operator Canal+ increased its stake in Nordic streamer Viaplay to 29.33%.

The news was revealed as Viaplay completed a €355m recapitalisation plan. This includes a €175m write down of existing debt obligations, of which €45m million are converted to equity.

2. Canal+ Viaplay.Jørgen Madsen Lindemann

Jørgen Madsen Lindemann, Viaplay Group

As a result of its participation in Viaplay’s recapitalisation, Canal+ Group will increase its stake in Viaplay from 12% to 29.33%, establishing itself as Viaplay’s largest shareholder.

Czech Republic investment group PPF has also increased its stake in Viaplay to 29.29% as part of the recapitalisation.

Based in Stockholm, Viaplay Group has been hit by subscriber churn and lower advertising revenue, and has pulled of the Baltics, UK, US, Canada and Poland to focus on the Nordics and Netherlands. In June last year, the company announced the departure of chief executive Anders Jensen who was replaced by Jorgen Madsen Lindemann.

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Maxime Saada, Canal+ Group Chairman and CEO, said: “Canal+ Group welcomes the successful completion of Viaplay’s recapitalization. With now a sound capital structure, a clear plan forward and a new and committed management team, Viaplay has laid the ground for a successful turnaround. Our group’s support to Viaplay is a new testimony to our ambition to become a global player in video entertainment and extend the group’s footprint internationally, with a focus on Europe, Africa, and Asia, as also shown very recently by our offer to acquire the entire share capital of Multichoice Group and our investment in leading Asian steaming platform Viu last year.”

Jørgen Madsen Lindemann, Viaplay Group President and CEO, said: “The recapitalisation package helps us address our immediate challenges, and also gives us the opportunity to realise our long-term ambitions.”

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