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Hedge fund Elliott issues new attack on Vivendi over Telecom Italia

Hedge fund Elliott issues new attack on Vivendi over Telecom Italia
FILE PHOTO: Telecom Italia tower is seen at the headquarter in Rozzano neighbourhood of Milan, Italy, May 25, 2016. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini/File Photo
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PARIS (Reuters) – Activist Elliott Advisors issued on Thursday a fresh attack on French media group Vivendi <VIV.PA> as the hedge fund’s battle with Vivendi over Telecom Italia <TLIT.MI> intensifies.

Elliott was responding to a document published earlier this week from Vivendi, in which Vivendi defended its track record as Telecom Italia’s (TIM) main shareholder.

The activist fund has built up a 9 percent stake in TIM and is asking for changes at the board at a shareholders vote on April 24, although Elliott has also said it wanted the same TIM chief executive as supported by Vivendi, Amos Genish.

“It is time for change at Telecom Italia. Elliott believes shareholders need a united board, not one divided and mired in litigation with its own statutory auditors,” it said.

“Shareholders deserve the opportunity to unlock significant value by supporting Elliott’s proposal, which begins with electing a truly independent Board of Directors on April 24,” the fund added in a statement.

(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta, editing by Maiya Keidan)

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