The court’s decision gives the green light to the takeover of the 89% of La Provence held by Groupe Bernard Tapie (GBT), over which there was little more suspense after the agreement announced at the end of August for the takeover by the shipowner CMA CGM, led by Rodolphe Saadé, of the 11% held by its competitor NJJ, the holding company of telecom magnate Xavier Niel.

Almost a year after the death of the emblematic Marseille businessman and then a battle in court, CMA CGM takes control of the flagship of the press in the south of France, which has 850 employees and publishes the daily newspapers La Provence and Corse-Matin.

This epilogue was already glimpsed at the end of the second call for tenders launched in February, when the co-liquidators of GBT had only retained the offer of CMA CGM which, with a proposal at 81 million euros, crushed that 20 million euros from Xavier Niel, the founder of Free.

But the latter then tried to assert his right of veto as majority shareholder, a clause suspended by the Marseille commercial court to avoid any conflict of interest.

The agreement finally sealed between the two giants of the economy provides in particular for the creation of a joint venture supposed to develop a new printing press in the Var by 2024, the two protagonists announced in a joint press release in August.

By acquiring the La Provence group, CMA CGM made a remarkable entry into the world of media. The maritime transport giant’s appetite does not stop there since Rodolphe Saadé is also in the running to take over M6, in a team led by Stéphane Courbit (FL Entertainment).