While Vivendi has just taken control of Lagardère, Yannick Bolloré is imposing her government and separating herself from her father’s strict guard.
It’s a “change of era” in Bolloré, says a close friend of the group. Ten days ago, Vivendi announced the new management under the leadership of the Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Yannick Bolloré. Until then, rather discreet, Vincent Bolloré’s youngest son took power and separated from his father’s lieutenants. And he wants to force his paw.
Always leave the “Bolloré boys”: Gilles Alix, a travel companion for 35 years, who mainly monitors the group’s African activities, and Cédric de Bailliencourt, treasurer for 15 years. These are the two “arms” of Vincent Bolloré within his empire, the Bolloré and the Compagnie de l’Odet, the family company. A third man, Hervé Philippe, will also leave Vivendi’s board on June 22. He joined Vincent Bolloré in 2005 during his raid on Havas. According to several sources, he should soon take a position in Lagardère.
These changes are intended to calm the situation with the European Commission, which is working on the takeover of Lagardère by Vivendi. “Bolloré is in search of Brussels and must show that his group, Vivendi and Lagardère, have independent governance,” concludes one of his friends. The “editorial cooperation” between Europe1, Radio Lagardère, and CNews, the Vivendi news channel, did not please the French competition authority. He suspects Vincent Bolloré that Lagardère directed remotely and fears his influence in the publishing sector.
Calming down the game with Brussels …
The European Commission has launched an investigation into the merger between Hachette and Editis, the publishers of both groups. Preliminary discussions with the competition services were “difficult” according to a close friend of the group. Brussels must give its opinion at the end of the year. It will be accompanied by significant concessions.
The withdrawal of Vincent Bollor should also calm the situation with Arnaud Lagarder after two years of tension. It’s time for reconciliation with Yannick Bollor at the helm. His relatives assure that he gets along very well with the one who will remain CEO of Lagardère and present a strategic plan in a few months.
This development comes when Vincent Bolloré handed over his children last February. The baton to Cyrille Bolloré in the group was handed over two years ago. Yannick Bolloré therefore takes the lead in Vivendi, while his father ended his offensive on Lagardère.
… and Emmanuel Macron
But this side also turns at an important political moment. The re-election of Emmanuel Macron is not good news for Vincent Bollor. He made no secret of the year by pushing Eric Zemmour to stand for law and defeating Emmanuel Macron. Bet lost. “The two men never liked each other, that’s for sure,” adds Vincent Bolloré, a 20-year-old friend. But in reality, the impact of Macron’s re-election counts little. “
However, Vivendi’s new strong man, Yannick Bolloré, sends clear messages about his intentions. “Vivendi does not support anyone politically and does not interfere in the journalistic content,” he urged BFM Business a month ago. In private, he claims that he does not know Eric Zemmour, which is a way to be different from his father. And he replies that he has known Emmanuel Macron well for more than a decade. In 2009, a former Rothschild banker worked with Yannick Bollor on a media acquisition project that never saw the light of day. The motto is clear: there is no problem with the tenant Elysée. “Yannick’s behavior is also a change of environment,” laughs the family member.