Italian government ‘meeting Thursday’ to discuss €300m fine on Vivendi over TIM

Alan Burkitt-Gray
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Today’s meeting delayed until after French-Italian meeting on Wednesday but fine for denying control of TIM still on agenda

The Italian government will meet on Thursday to discuss whether to penalise Vivendi over its shareholding in Telecom Italia.

Reuters is reporting this morning that a meeting originally scheduled for today has been postponed by two days – because high-level meetings between French and Italian government officials are now taking place on Wednesday.

Italy is objecting to the fact that a French company, Vivendi, is now the largest shareholder in Telecom Italia, which operates under the TIM brand, with a 24% stake.

Vivendi denies it has control, though it has played a major role in appointing a new board and has appointed its own former chief convergence officer, Amos Genish, to the most senior management position. The appointment led to the resignation of TIM’s former CEO, Flavio Cattaneo.

According to Reuters, the Italian government meeting will consider imposing a fine on Vivendi of up to €300 million for failing to notify it of its effective control over TIM.

Italy is particularly concerned that TIM’s businesses include nationally important infrastructure, such as Sparkle’s national and international fibre networks.