London, 3 February 2005 – LAWFUEL – The Law News Network – Baker & McKenzie announced today that it advised Platinum Equity on its acquisition in the UK and France of Vivendi’s CD and sales businesses, Universal Group Direct and DIAL, two of the largest club-based marketers of DVD, CD and video game entertainment in Europe. The two businesses serve about 1.5 million active customers and generate annual revenue of approximately EUR 170 million.
Platinum Equity is a global acquisition firm, headquartered in Los Angeles, specialising in the merger, acquisition and operation of services and solution businesses. Since its founding in 1995, Platinum Equity has acquired more than 50 businesses and built a portfolio of companies with nearly 40,000 employees.
Universal Group Direct is based in the UK and DIAL in France. They generate revenue from a club model in which customers contract via an introductory offer to purchase entertainment products over time.
The Baker & McKenzie team was led by Corporate Partner Adam Levin with assistance from Corporate Associates Karen Guch and David Allen. Paris Partner Alain Sauty de Chalon managed the French corporate aspects of the transaction assisted by Associate Audrey Chassang.
Commenting on the transaction, Adam Levin said: “This was the second deal which Baker & McKenzie closed for Platinum Equity within the last twelve months. We are delighted to have acted on both this transaction and Platinum’s acquisition of Hays Logistics from Hays plc early last year.”
SJ Berwin acted as legal advisers and CSFB acted as financial advisers to Vivendi.