Regulatory, Telecom & Media News – Cogeco turns down $11B revised takeover offer

Cogeco’s controlling shareholders have turned down a revised $11 billion takeover offer from Rogers Communications Inc. and Altice USA. Cogeco says it received a second unsolicited offer on Sunday, despite its unequivocal rebuff of an earlier $10.3 billion offer in September. Cogeco says the revised non-binding proposal was reviewed by Gestion Audem Inc., a company controlled by the members of the Audet family, which holds a controlling interest in both Cogeco and Cogeco Communications, indicating it does not intend to sell its shares and will not support the revised proposal.

Cogeco Communications subsidiary Cogeco Connexion has entered into an agreement to purchase DERYtelecom, the third largest cable provider in the province of Quebec for $405 million. DERYtelecom is based in Saguenay and offers internet, television and telephony services to approximately 100,000 customers in over 200 municipalities, including Estrie, Lanaudière, Montérégie and the Laurentians. DERYtelecom’s revenue for the 2020 fiscal year was estimated at $105 million, according to Cogeco. 

Raj Shoan

The Federal Court of Appeal has dismissed former CRTC commissioner Raj Shoan’s latest appeal fighting his 2017 dismissal from the commission. Shoan was seeking a declaration that allegations of racism within the regulator should have been investigated, however the court said the issue should have been raised during his initial application and was inappropriate to be heard by a review court. Shoan previously raised the issue of racism within the commission in 2016, around the time of his first dismissal from the regulator. While he won a judicial review and was reinstated in 2017, that lasted just days before the federal cabinet revoked his appointment.

 

Canadian Business is out with its list of fastest-growing companies in Canada, measured by revenue growth over the last five years. Among those in the media category making this year’s list are Renfrew, ON-based My Broadcasting Corporation (MBC), which ranked #391, recording five-year growth of 81%. Vancouver’s Thunderbird Entertainment Group ranked #403 with 68% growth, while theScore came in #237 with 298% growth. Other notable mentions include Victoria publishing platform SendtoNews, which ranked #70 overall; while Quebec City’s Squeeze Studio Animation came in at #65. 

Bell Media, in partnership with the Institute of Communication Agencies (ICA), has launched the inaugural Inclusivity, Diversity, and Equity in Advertising (IDEA) competition. The campaign that best demonstrates a clear message of diversity and inclusion will receive $1 million in media inventory on Bell Media platforms. Open to national and international brands and their agencies and evaluated by a panel of diverse judges, the competition seeks groundbreaking work that celebrates diversity through advertising. Brands and their agencies can register to receive more information about how to enter here.

Francine Pelletier

Francine Pelletier has been named Concordia University’s 2020 journalist-in-residence. The former The Fifth Estate correspondent, award-winning documentarian, and weekly columnist for Le Devoir, plans to increase the profile of documentary journalism through a virtual workshop series and other activities.