The Oslo Court of Execution and Enforcement ruled in favour of Telenor and rejected all of Canal+'s demands for a temporary injunction in the Canal Digital transaction dispute. "The verdict is an accordance with what we have claimed all along", said Erik Nord, Vice President of Telenor Plus.
The Oslo Court of Execution and Enforcement has ruled that Canal+ has unlawfully tried to secure a pecuniary claim via a temporary injunction. Canal+ was also instructed to pay all of Telenor’s legal costs of NOK 390,000.
“Telenor has always stressed that the Canal Digital transaction dispute between Telenor and Canal+ could not be decided by the Oslo Court of Execution and Enforcement. The verdict supports us in this. We will now await further developments until it is clear whether the verdict is being appealed”, said Nord.
Canal+’s demand stated that Telenor had to carry out the transaction immediately and pay NOK 1.9 billion to Canal+. In the hearing in the Oslo Court of Execution and Enforcement, Telenor’s counsel, Supreme Court advocate, Erik Samuelsen, stated that in Telenor’s opinion Canal+’s real intention behind the demand for a temporary injunction was to obtain a sum of cash before the terms and conditions of the agreement were met.
The dispute concerns a sales agreement from July 10, 2002 in connection with the TV company Canal Digital, where Telenor entered into a sales agreement with its business partner Canal+ Group SA (Canal+) for the purchase of the remaining 50 per cent of Canal Digital. The total value of the agreement is NOK 2.4 billion, of which NOK 1.9 billion is to be paid in cash. The parties agreed at the same time on a long-term distribution agreement for Canal+’s television channels on Canal Digital’s platform in the Nordic countries. Telenor has always believed that a central condition with regard to this purchase was that both the purchase and the distribution agreements had to be approved by the necessary regulatory authorities. The purchase has now been approved by the competition authorities in the Nordic countries, but the EU Commission has still not decided on the distribution agreements. Canal+ believes that the EU’s approval of the distribution agreements is not necessary in order to carry out the sales agreement.
Telenor Plus is one of the four core areas in the Telenor group. Telenor Plus supplies communication solutions in the fields of fixed telephony, Internet and broadband, as well as television and content services aimed at the private market. Telenor Plus has more than 3,200 employees who are divided into the divisions Broadcast, Content & Interactive Services, Telephony & Internet and Customer Services.
Telenor is one of Norway’s largest listed companies, with a turnover in 2000 of NOK 37.6 billion and 21,000 employees in Norway and abroad. Telenor is Norway’s leading enterprise in the distribution of voice, information, knowledge and entertainment and, in addition to its operations in the domestic market, is engaged in extensive and fast growing business operations in a number of countries in Europe and South-East Asia.