Arnaud Lagardère would be 'somewhat happy' that his name disappeared in favor of Polloré

If the name of his company “would disappear in favor of a name like Vincent Bollory, I would be somewhat happy,” said Arnaud Lagardère on the Complément d’Enquête program broadcast Thursday evening on France 2.

Arnaud Lagardere wouldn’t be bothered, even “fairly happy,” if his name disappeared from the group he’s CEO in in favor of the name Vincent Bollory taking over, the leader said during a show back on the air Thursday night.

“Legal persons survive from natural persons,” he repeated several times in an interview with the Complément d’Enquête program, which is broadcast Thursday evening on France 2.

But if the company name inherited by his father Jean-Luc “should disappear in favor of a name like Vincent Boulogne, I would be somewhat happy,” he declared, interviewed by journalist Tristan Walleck at Lagardère Paris Racing, a sports club in the heart of Bois de Boulogne. “I don’t mind, and neither do my father,” he continued. However, he would “regret” coming to this.

Similarities between Jean-Luc Lagardère and Vincent Polloré

Personally in debt and at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic faced with the difficulties of the distribution branch located in stations and airports, Arnaud Lagardère was forced in the spring of 2020 to contact Vincent Polloré to help him deal with the shareholder revolt. Through the French media giant Vivendi, the capital of Lagardère was gradually eroded, then it got an amendment to the statutes of the group, before launching a takeover bid for control.

Vivendi has acquired 55.4% of Lagardère’s share capital since the end of May and has given Arnaud Lagardère a 6-year mandate as CEO, promising to respect the integrity of his group. “I find that there are a lot of similarities between Jean-Luc Lagardère and Vincent Polloré. (…) They are very hardworking, and very demanding of people (…). “We only kneel before God”, Arnaud Lagardère said in the same interview, He denied any tension with the Breton businessman.

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Vivendi’s acquisition of Lagardère should lead to the convergence of Europe 1 with the channels of the Canal + group, including the ultra-conservative CNews, and to a merger of the two leading publishing players in France, Hachette and Editis. Arnaud Lagardère said such operations would respect pluralism “because it is protected by law” and could lead to many publishing houses being sold for licensing by competition authorities.

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