By Hajer M'tiri
French billionaire Vincent Bollore along with other employees of his Bollore Group were detained for questioning in Nanterre, near Paris, on Tuesday as part of an investigation into alleged corruption involving lucrative port deals in Africa.
According to the French newspaper Le Monde, the investigation focuses on port deals made in 2010 in Lome, the capital of the West African nation of Togo, and Conakry in Guinea.
The company is suspected of using communications and advertising subsidiary Havas to support African leaders who then ensured that another subsidiary, Bollore Africa Logistics, would win shipping terminal contracts.
The group denied in a statement " that its subsidiary company SDV Africa has committed irregularities. The services relating to this invoicing were carried out in full transparency."
The company's shares fell more than 4.5 percent in Paris trading after the news came out.
The 67-year-old CEO of the Bollore Group, abruptly stepped down as the chairman of media giant Vivendi last week and his son Yannick, 38, was appointed to take over from him as chairman.
In 2017, Vivendi bought out communications company Havas -- chaired by the younger Bollore -- from the Bollore Group.