Dailymotion should stay in European hands, France says
France opposes exclusive talks between Orange and Hong Kong's PCCW group for a 49 percent stake in Dailymotion, preferring a European partner for the French video-sharing platform, the finance ministry indicated Wednesday.
"There cannot be exclusive negotiations," a finance ministry source told AFP, confirming a report in the daily Le Monde.
"All options must be examined, taking into account concern for European sovereignty," he said.
Le Monde said the French holding company Fimalac was interested in Orange's video platform, in which the state has a 24.9 percent stake.
The German groups Axel Springer and Bertelsmann have also been mentioned.
In 2013 France's then industrial renewal minister, Arnaud Montebourg, blocked a bid by Yahoo! of the United States to acquire Dailymotion.
Orange CEO Stephane Richard said in mid-March that "simple negotiations" had opened with PCCW to take a 49 percent stake in Dailymotion and they were not exclusive.
Richard said PCCW, with activities in telecoms, media and other sectors, was a "powerful actor that could give us access to the Chinese market."
PCCW is headed by Richard Li, son of Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-Shing.
© 2015 AFP