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Major merger of prominent pan-Baltic communications’ groups with HAVAS

Publicum Group (Lithuania) and Idea Group (Estonia) have joined forces to create the largest integrated communications group in the Baltic States and entered into joint venture with HAVAS. Worldwide communications group HAVAS is a part of Vivendi (the company controls Universal Music Group, Canal+ Group, Gameloft, etc.).

Havas has acquired 51 % of stake in Baltic Media Holding OÜ which is the controlling entity of operating companies which were part of Publicum and Idea groups. As a result of this acquisition, Baltic Media Holding OÜ shall be using HAVAS brand and will provide public relations, media planning, advertising, digital marketing, and other communication services in the Baltic States.

M&A team’s contribution to the deal

Our lawyers practicing in mergers and acquisitions were legal advisors to Publicum Group and prepared the operating companies for inclusion into the joint venture. This required restructuring which took place for almost a year, although, some preparatory actions were already started at the end of 2016.

Furthermore, we have advised our client regarding transaction implementation in the most advantageous way from tax and legal perspectives, also the big picture of the final transaction with HAVAS. Our lawyers prepared transaction documentation, plan of restructuring, advised the client regarding proposed steps and Lithuanian regulations, also coordinated specific issues with public institutions.

Another specific issue was coordination of competition clearance matter with Competition Council of Lithuania, as well as assisting lawyers of Idea Group regarding obtaining competition clearance in Estonia. Successful cooperation with competition councils was one of the essential preconditions for preparing the joint group for sale to HAVAS.

Moreover, our team has advised the client on the share purchase agreement with HAVAS, as well as shareholders’ agreement which shall be the key document for post-acquisition integration and governance of the newly formed group. This process required swift responses to complicated legal issues and eye for details as deadlines for implementation of the transaction were strict.

Our legal team is always seeking to become the best law firm in Lithuania. Every success story is one more step towards our goal.

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