TFI selling Canal Plus France stake

Deal worth $1.2 billion

PARIS -- French private TV group TF1 will sell its 9.9% interest in pay TV group Canal Plus's Gallic subsidiary Canal Plus France to media giant Vivendi, according to an agreement signed by the companies Monday.

Vivendi will pay €744 million ($1.2 billion) for the stake in a "definitive agreement" expected to be finalized by the end of the year. Once the deal is signed, the Canal Plus Group will increase its 65% stake in Canal Plus France to 75%. TF1 and other Gallic private TV group M6 hold a collective 15% in Canal Plus France, so Vivendi could opt to buy M6's shares next year.

Vivendi has extended the buyout offer to M6 for its 5.1% stake according to a statement released Monday from Vivendi and Canal Plus Group. Vivendi might also choose to buy out Lagardere's 20% shares in Canal Plus France early next year.