Vivendi UniversalVivendi Universal was created in December of 2000 with the massive merger of the Vivendi media empire with Canal+ television networks and the Canadian company Seagram, the owner of Universal Studios film company. See Vivendi for previous company history.
In 2001, VU acquired mp3.com and a leading American publisher, Houghton Mifflin.
In 2002, VU began facing financial trouble. It began financial reshuffling, trying to shore up media holdings while selling off shares in its spin-off companies.