WARSAW Oct 10 Media groups Time Warner
and Vivendi will likely place the only two binding bids
for a controlling stake in Polish broadcaster TVN
worth more than $800 million, three sources told Reuters on
TVN's parent company, ITI Group, in July launched the sale
of its 56-percent holding in TVN, which has a market
capitalisation of $1.6 billion. The media group operates a
pay-TV business, free-to-air channels, and Poland's bigget web
The stake would give either Time Warner or Vivendi a large
foothold in one of the most vibrant media markets in Europe.
Local media have said Bertelsmann-owned RTL Group
was also in the running, but Reuters sources said on
Monday the group dropped out of the race.
"TVN is preparing for due diligence," one of the sources
said. "Time Warner is getting close to the deal, with the second
bidder most probably being Vivendi. Bertelsmann is not placing a
ITI and Time Warner were not immediately avaialable, while
Vivendi had no comment.
Last week, sources close to the situation also said Vivendi
could team up with a local Polish partner to squeeze synergies
out of its possible TVN buy, with local media naming France
Telecom-controlled Poland's top telecom TPSA
as a likely partner.