Senior Staff Photographer/Editor, Toronto, Ontario
Hyungwon's Feed
Mar 13, 2014

Bouygues raises bid for Vivendi’s SFR to shut out Numericable

PARIS, March 13 (Reuters) – French conglomerate Bouygues
enriched the cash element of its offer for media group
Vivendi’s telecoms unit SFR on Thursday in an attempt
to seal a deal and shut out rival bidder Numericable.

Bouygues said it would increase the cash portion of the bid
to 11.3 billion euros ($15.7 billion) from 10.5 billion
previously, while reducing the stake Vivendi is left with in the
combined SFR-Bouygues telecoms business to 43 percent, from 46
percent previously.

Mar 12, 2014

Vivendi hunts for the right telecom exit

PARIS, March 12 (Reuters) – The traditional shoppers’
warning is caveat emptor, or “buyer beware”. When Vivendi’s
board meets on Friday to choose between two bids for
its French telecom unit SFR, “seller beware” may be more

Both offers – from conglomerate Bouygues and local
cable operator Numericable – leave Vivendi with a
significant minority stake in the newly-created operator and
continued exposure to the French telecom market, which has been
in the throes of a price war since 2012.

Mar 10, 2014

Iliad profits soar, sees lift from merger of rivals

PARIS, March 10 (Reuters) – Shares in French low-cost
telecoms company Iliad soared 15 percent on Monday
after it announced industry-beating sales and profit growth and
signed what could be a transformative mobile network deal with
larger rival Bouygues.

Iliad, backed by tycoon Xavier Niel, stands to benefit from
sector consolidation in prospect after media company Vivendi
received two bids for the second-biggest French mobile
service, SFR.

Mar 9, 2014

Bouygues to sell network to Iliad if SFR bid accepted

PARIS (Reuters) – France’s Bouygues Telecom (BOUY.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) has agreed to sell its mobile network and much of its spectrum to smaller rival Iliad (ILD.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) as a way to head off competition regulators’ concerns about its pending bid for Vivendi’s SFR (VIV.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

If Vivendi picks Bouygues’ bid for SFR over a rival offer – and if regulators approve the merger – then Bouygues will sell 15,000 mobile antennas and some of its mobile spectrum to Iliad for up to 1.8 billion euros ($2.50 billion), according to statements from both companies on Sunday.

Mar 6, 2014

Orange pledges stable operating margins despite France woes

PARIS, March 6 (Reuters) – Orange shares jumped to
a four-month high on Thursday after France’s largest telecom
operator forecast stable margins this year and higher core
profit than analysts were expecting.

Orange forecast earnings before interest, tax, depreciation
and amortisation (EBITDA) of 12.1-12.6 billion euros for 2014,
above the Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S poll average of 12.08 billion.

Mar 5, 2014

Four billionaires, one telecoms company up for grabs

PARIS, March 5 (Reuters) – Two French billionaires are vying
to buy telecoms carrier SFR while a third watches closely from
the sidelines. A fourth could be the kingmaker.

SFR’s owner, Vivendi, confirmed receipt of two
offers for France’s second-biggest telecom group on Wednesday.
The bidders are cable operator Numericable
– backed by Patrick Drahi, number 215 on Forbes’
billionaires list – and Bouygues – the family company
of Martin Bouygues, Forbes’ billionaire number 408.

Feb 26, 2014

Bouygues lifts core profit and heats up telco price war

PARIS, Feb 26 (Reuters) – French construction-to-telecoms
group Bouygues unveiled higher core profit and a new
low-cost fixed line package on Wednesday, heating up a domestic
price war that has been weighing on revenue.

The conglomerate said it would rely on a robust construction
business and competitive telephone packages this year after
savings at its telecom and television units helped lift
operating profit by 5 percent in 2013.

Feb 25, 2014

SFR weighs on Vivendi profits ahead of spin-off

PARIS, Feb 25 (Reuters) – French media-and-telecoms company
Vivendi posted an fall in underlying 2013 profits on
Tuesday hit by tough competition for its domestic mobile brand
SFR, which is set to be spun off.

Vivendi, which is restructuring to pay down debt and focus
on media, reported a 23.1 percent fall in adjusted earnings
before interest, tax and amortisation to 2.4 billion euros, hit
by the cost of revamping SFR.

Feb 24, 2014

Vivendi and Altice discuss SFR-Numericable tie-up

PARIS (Reuters) – French media group Vivendi (VIV.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) confirmed on Monday it had been approached by cable group Altice (ATCE.AS: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) over a tie-up between mobile operator SFR and cable firm Numericable (NUME.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), but said it had not yet received any formal offer.

The proposal being discussed would value Vivendi unit SFR at around 15 billion euros ($20.6 billion) and would see Vivendi keep a stake of roughly 30 percent in the new company, a source close to SFR told Reuters earlier. A second source cautioned that it remained to be negotiated what proportion of the new company the two sides would own.

Feb 24, 2014

Vivendi, Altice discuss SFR-Numericable deal -sources

PARIS, Feb 24 (Reuters) – French media group Vivendi
and cable group Altice are in discussions
over a tie-up between mobile operator SFR and cable firm
Numericable, sources close to the talks said on

No agreement has yet been reached but the proposal being
discussed would value SFR, a unit of Vivendi, at around 15
billion euros ($20.6 billion) and would see Vivendi keep a stake
of roughly 30 percent stake in the newly merged company, one of
the sources said. A second source cautioned that it remained to
be negotiated what proportion of the new company the two sides
would own after the tie-up.

    • About Hyungwon

      "As a photojournalist for more than a quarter of century, Hyungwon Kang has been a witness to history. Kang has worked for Reuters, The Associated Press, Los Angeles Times and TIME Magazine. During his tenure in journalism, Kang has served as a Photographer, Photo Editor, Front Page Photo Editor, Photo Assignment Editor, and as a Manager of Photo Department. Currently, Kang works as Senior Picture Editor at Reuters Pictures North America Desk. Duties include assigning and editing of news, sports and feature coverage of the U.S. and Canada as well as participating in news coverage as needed."
      Joined Reuters:
      English, Korean, Spanish, Mandarin Chinese
      Pulitzer, 1993
      Pulitzer, 1999
    • More from Hyungwon

      "From the Streets to the Olympics, (Korea, Democracy and the 24th Olympiad, 1987-88)
      Art Space publications, 1989"
    • Contact Hyungwon

    • Follow Hyungwon