Jean-Marie Messier

Jean-Marie Messier (born 13 December 1956) is a French businessman who was Chairman and Chief Executive of the multinational media conglomerate Vivendi SA (formerly Vivendi Universal) until 2002.

Business career

After studying at the École Polytechnique from 1976 to 1980, and then at the École nationale d'administration between 1980 and 1982, Messier held several posts at the French Economy Ministry during the 1980s, before moving to investment bank Lazard Freres in 1989. After taking up the chairmanship of the utility company Compagnie Générale des Eaux in 1994, he oversaw its diversification into the media sector and its 2000 merger with Canal+ and Seagram (owners of Universal Studios) to form Vivendi Universal.

Forced resignation, and dispute over apartment

Messier was forced to resign from his position with Vivendi in July 2002, after the company posted a non-cash loss of 13.6 billion euro ($US 11.8 billion) during 2001. During his time as CEO of Vivendi, Messier used corporate funds to buy a $17.5 million apartment for his personal use at 515 Park Avenue at 60th Street in New York City, the swank Arthur Zeckendorf development that was home to luminaries such as Senator Jon Corzine. After he was fired, Messier tried to claim the apartment as part of his severance package, but was rebuffed. [Johnson, Jo and Orange, Martine, "The Man Who Tried To Buy The World: Jean-Marie Messier and Vivendi Universal", Pg 238] Messier then relocated to New York City to work as a business consultant.


* cite web
author = Neligan, Myles
year = 2002
url =
title = Profile: Jean-Marie Messier
work = BBC NEWS: Business
publisher = BBC
accessdate = 2006-03-14

* Former Vivendi Chief Said To Be Using Company Money for Personal Billshttp:// The Sun,Retrieved 20 August 2007


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