Published: Tue, May 08, 2018
Markets | By Otis Pena

Comcast to make a hostile bid for Fox assets?

Comcast to make a hostile bid for Fox assets?

Comcast has so far made the higher offer, at £12.50 a share compared with Fox's £10.75.

Comcast plans to put $52 billion (€43.7bn) in cash on the table for the majority of the Fox's assets.

Reports suggest that U.S. media giant Comcast is planning an all-cash bid of $60 billion (€50bn) for most of 21st Century Fox's assets, dependent on whether the U.S. administration approves AT&T's acquisition of Time Warner.

Comcast, which already has a $30-billion bridge loan to finance its bid for a 61-per cent stake in European pay-TV group Sky Plc, is seeking $60 billion to outbid Disney, Reuters today reported, citing three people familiar with the development.

21st Century Fox, which owns...

Comcast believes Disney can not match an all-cash bid for Fox because if it adds more stock to a deal, Fox stock will go down, depressing the value of the offer, sources told CNBC.

Comcast is considering making a play to break.

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Comcast is reportedly waiting for a judge to decide next month on the Justice Department's challenge to AT&T Inc's planned merger with Time Warner before it submits the offer to Fox.

Intriguingly, one of the selling points to Murdoch for Disney CEO Bob Iger's overtures previous year was that Murdoch felt there would be less a concern for antitrust challenges with Disney. "The UK government has stated that it will give its ruling on the Fox/Sky deal by 13 June and it is at this point we think we could see Fox raising its bid for Sky", UBS said.

Some analysts believe Comcast would have to suspend its share buyback program entirely if it was able to snatch Fox from Disney's jaws, although its dividend appears safe for now.

Disney brass has stated they would intend to consolidate Sky ownership under the House of Mouse, which would be unlikely should Comcast's acquisition attempt prove fruitful. The Roberts family controls Comcast through a dual-class stock structure.

Reuters formerly claimed the Comcast was conversing with banks about obtaining bridge financing from prep for a potential all-cash bid.

Fox will separate the Fox Broadcasting network and stations, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, its sports channels FS1, FS2 and the Big Ten Network, into a newly listed company that it will spin off to its shareholders.

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