Her Habs bid must go on


Celine Dion, Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberte and Quebec cable giant Quebecor Media have emerged as potential bidders for the NHL's Montreal Canadiens.

Quebec broadcaster Radio-Canada said Wednesday that the Bank of Montreal has signed confidentiality agreements with 10 potential suitors who have until today to submit formal bids to 80% majority owner George Gillett, a Denver-based sports-team and events promoter.

Other interested parties include U.S. investment firm Spectrum Equity; Montreal businessman Stephen Bronfman of Claridge Investments, a cousin of WMG chairman and CEO Edgar Bronfman Jr.; and the Caisse de depot et placement, a provincial pension-fund giant.

In addition to picking up the hockey team, a Canadiens buyer would acquire the Bell Centre arena in Montreal and a concert-promotion division. (partialdiff)