Vivendi completes MP3.com purchase

Media and communications giant Vivendi Universal announced that it completed its acquisition of renegade online music company...

Media and communications giant Vivendi Universal announced that it completed its acquisition of renegade online music company MP3.com on 29 August, just in time for the French company's scheduled foray into online music.

Vivendi's purchase of San Diego-based MP3.com, previously valued at $372m (£256m), was approved by 99% of shareholders who voted in a special meeting on 27 August, the company said.

Vivendi first announced that it would acquire MP3.com last May as part of its plan to launch its own online music subscription service, Pressplay. The two sites are intended to be affiliates, with MP3.com keeping its brand identity.

Pressplay is a joint venture between Vivendi and Sony Music Entertainment and set to launch later in the third quarter of this year, roughly at the same time rival subscription site MusicNet is scheduled to go live. MusicNet is backed by AOL Time Warner, Bertelsmann AG, EMI Group PLC and RealNetworks.

MP3.com, along with its clout in the online music realm, also brings with it digital music technology which Vivendi hopes to use for its Pressplay venture.

"The acquisition of MP3.com was an extremely important step in our strategy to create both a distribution platform and acquire state-of-the art technology," said Jean-Marie Messier, Vivendi Universal chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) in a statement.

Further Information
Vivendi: www.vivendiuniversal.com.

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