Spanish media group Prisa says Vivendi withdrew request to raise stake

MADRID, April 8 (Reuters) - French media group Vivendi has withdrawn its request to the Spanish government to let it increase its stake in Spanish rival Prisa, the publisher of El Pais newspaper said on Friday.

Last October, Vivendi filed a request to raise its stake in Prisa to up to 29.9% from 9.94% at the time, as a part of a strategy to extend its reach in the Spanish-language markets in Europe, Latin America and the United States. Vivendi built its stake in Prisa by first acquiring a 7.89% stake from HSBC for 52 million euros ($56.49 million).

The Spanish government passed a law in 2020 requiring foreign firms to seek authorisation to buy significant stakes in Spanish listed companies.

The main shareholder in Prisa is activist fund Amber Capital, led by French investor Joseph Oughourlian, with a 29.84% stake, Refinitiv Eikon information shows.

$1 = 0.9206 euros Reporting by Inti Landauro; editing by Jason Neely