Fox Jumps on Report That Comcast Is Considering Counterbid to Disney
09 May, 2018, 00:58
According to a regulatory filing, Comcastoffered to acquire Fox's entertainment networks, movie studios, television production and global assets in an all-stock deal valued at $34.41 per share, or $64 billion.
"Assuming Fox continues to pursue a deal with Disney, Fox will need to raise its bid for Sky from its current level of 1,075p plus dividends in order to win control".
"At the margin, the news may be seen as negative for investor sentiment on Sky as it may limit Comcast's ability to counter-bid should Fox raise its offer for Sky", UBS said. Comcast is preparing a $60 billion hostile bid, while Disney is ready to offer a $52 billion stake exchange according to an agreement reached at the end of December 2017. Instead, Disney is now planning to acquire Fox's film, television and worldwide businesses.
Under the deal, Disney will also acquire FX Networks, National Geographic Partners, Fox Sports Regional Networks, Fox Networks Group International, Star India and Fox's interests in Hulu, Sky plc, Tata Sky and Endemol Shine Group. In fact, the broadcasting conglomerate pushed a more generous deal than Disney. In doing so, it topped an earlier offer for the entirety of Sky by Fox.
Comcast has already made a formal unsolicited $31 billion offer in Europe for Sky satellite-TV business, which is partly controlled by Murdoch. Fox shares shot 3.6% higher in after-hours trading Monday evening, while Disney stock fell about 0.5% and Comcast declined about 0.1%. Murdoch was concerned about the reaction of Washington regulators to a deal with Comcast.
Regulatory concerns aside, Fox last month viewed Disney's stock as "more valuable than Comcast's, based on historic prices, and felt that a deal between Disney and Fox would generate greater long-term value", says Reuters.
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