Telefónica, Vivideni mull joint Digital Plus bid

Telefónica and France's Vivendi are discussing a joint bid for Digital Plus, the satellite pay-TV business. Its owner, Spanish media group Prisa, is selling it to reduce debt. Prisa set a deadline for bids two weeks ago.

However, Prisa hasn't received any binding bids and informal proposals have fallen well short of the more than €3 billion it hoped for. BSkyB, the UK pay-TV company, has withdrawn from the proceedings and Mediaset, the Italian media group, looks likely to do the same.

Telefónica already has an paid for IPTV service, Imagenio. Some executives are arguing that Digital Plus' 2 million satellite subscribers, would complement this, according to the Financial Times.

The report says a tie-up between Telefónica and Digital Plus would put more pressure on Ono, Spain's other pay-TV company with its own network. Ono is controlled by a private equity consortium. It has seemingly endless management problems and is hard hit by the downturn.

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