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Sirois telecom eyes Coscient

$7.5 million deal set to close July 2

MONTREAL — Charles Sirois, one of Canada’s top telecommunications execs, has made a bid to take over Montreal-based Coscient Group, Quebec’s leading TV producer and the third-largest production outfit in Canada.

Sirois’ Telesystem Intl. Wireless announced Friday that two Coscient executives, vice-chairman Laurent Gaudreau and president Richard Laferriere, have accepted an offer to sell all 2.4 million of their Coscient class-A shares to Corporation Financiere Telesysteme, a division of Sirois’ holding company. The deal is worth C$10.9 million ($7.5 million), with the Coscient shares priced at $3.16 per share.

Gaudreau and Laferriere, who founded Coscient 20 years ago, control approximately 28% of its voting stock, while CEO Yves Moquin has a 22% voting stake.

It is widely known in the financial community that Moquin, who came on board in 1993, and Laferriere do not see eye to eye on the running of the company. According to a Telesystem press release issued Friday, both Gaudreau and Laferriere would retain their positions after the sale goes through. The closing of the deal is scheduled for July 2 and can be postponed to Aug. 1.

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