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Viv U library books $700 mil for refinancing

Proceeds to partially refinance billion bridge loan

HOLLYWOOD — Vivendi Universal said Tuesday that it completed a months-long process to secure upward of $700 million in corporate financing for its entertainment unit in a transaction that spins projected film library revenue into commercial paper.

The so-called securitization, which began taking shape last fall (Daily Variety, Oct. 21), is similar to recent financings at DreamWorks and 20th Century Fox. Arranged by J.P. Morgan Securities and Banc of America Securities, the financing is akin to a plan U had in placed several years ago when Seagram owned the studio.

Vivendi U will use proceeds from the five-year financing partially to refinance a $1.6 billion bridge loan that dates to the French conglom’s acquisition of USA Networks last year. The initial funding from the transaction will reportedly expand over time to a total financing of $950 million.

Vivendi U stock closed down 33¢ to $13.73 on Tuesday.

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