Berlusconi’s eldest children to take joint control of Mediaset owner Fininvest

Pier Silvio Berlusconi

No single child of the late Silvio Berlusconi is to have a controlling interest in media holding company Fininvest under the terms of the former Italian prime minister and media tycoon’s will, with his son Pier Silvio and daughter Marina to jointly hold a majority stake.

It has emerged today that Berlusconi’s two eldest children Marina and Pier Silvio will share joint control of the media empire through a joint 53% stake in Fininvest. They previously held 7.65%.

Fininvest released a short statement that said: “Marina Berlusconi, Chairman of the BoD, and Pier Silvio Berlusconi, Barbara Berlusconi and Luigi Berlusconi, directors, having received the reading of the testamentary wills of their father Silvio Berlusconi, inform that they show that no person will hold indirect sole control over Fininvest SpA, previously exercised by the father himself.”

MediaForEurope released a statement with much the same information: “Further to the reading of Silvio Berlusconi’s last will and testament, Pier Silvio Berlusconi, CEO, and Marina Berlusconi, director, inform that no shareholder will exercise overall individual indirect control of Fininvest SpA, previously exercised by their father himself.”

Marina Berlusconi currently chairs Finivnvest while Pier Silvio is CEO of MediaForEurope (MFE), the Dutch-based holding company for media assets Mediaset in Italy and Spain and the largest stake in Germany’s ProSiebenSat.1.

According to press reports following Italian press agency ANSA, Berlusconi’s children from his second marriage, Luigi, Eleonora and Barbara, will control the remaining 47% of Fininvest between them. They previously owned 21.42%.

Silvio Berlusconi himself had controlled 61.21% of the holding company.

In addition to MFE, Fininvest controls the Mondadori publishing group, chaired by Marina, and other assets.

Earlier this week Pier Silvio Berlusconi had publicly quashed speculation that his father’s death could be followed by a sale of the media empire – speculation that had given rise to a sharp uptick in MFE’s share price.

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