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14 Jun 2018 03:38

The Comcast/Disney biding war begins ... stay tuned!
https://www.bbc.com/news/business-44473147
Comcast, the US media conglomerate, has submitted another offer to buy parts of 21st Century Fox, after getting rebuffed last year in favour of Disney.

Comcast said it has offered $65bn (£48.6bn) in cash for assets that include Fox's film and television studios and international businesses.

The bid sets up a fight with Disney, which announced its own plan to acquire those businesses last year.

The two firms are also vying for ownership of Sky in the UK.

Comcast said its proposal is "at least as favourable" to shareholders as Disney's plan.

The firm is offering Fox $35 per share in cash, which it says provides more shareholder certainty and is 19% higher than Disney's proposal, which involves exchanging shares.


https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-06-13/comcast-offers-65-billion-for-fox-in-bidding-war-with-disney
Comcast also is making an ambitious push in Europe that centers on U.K. pay TV provider Sky. After Fox made a takeover offer for the 61 percent stake in Sky that it doesn’t already own, Comcast launched a 22 billion pound ($30 billion) counterbid for the business. Disney also is interested in owning Sky.

But Comcast investors haven’t welcomed the company’s sudden appetite for megadeals. Its shares were down 19 percent this year through Wednesday. If Comcast buys Fox and Sky, the cable giant could become one of America’s largest corporate borrowers and its credit ratings may teeter at the bottom edge of investment grade.
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16 Jun 2018 02:19

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-06-15/fox-board-is-said-to-weigh-65-billion-comcast-bid-on-wednesday
Rupert Murdoch and the 21st Century Fox Inc. board will consider on Wednesday how to proceed with Comcast Corp.’s $65 billion bid for the company’s entertainment assets, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The Fox board, which agreed to sell the assets to Walt Disney Co. last year, must decide whether Comcast’s proposal has a reasonable chance of becoming a superior offer before it can begin negotiations with the largest U.S. cable television company. Fox can also ask Disney for a waiver to begin discussions with Comcast, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private.

The regularly scheduled board meeting was set before Comcast made its new, improved offer on Wednesday, said one of the people. Fox said this week that it would “carefully review” Comcast’s unsolicited proposal.
...
Under the terms of its merger agreement with Fox, Disney has the right of refusal on any counteroffer. If the Fox board deems Comcast’s offer to be better, Disney will have five days to make a fresh bid.
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21 Jun 2018 04:20

The House of Mouse ups the bid ...
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-06-20/fox-agrees-to-sweetened-bid-from-disney-dealing-blow-to-comcast
Walt Disney Co. raised its offer for 21st Century Fox Inc.’s entertainment assets to $71.3 billion, outbidding Comcast Corp. in a battle for one of the media industry’s biggest prizes.

The $38-a-share price is about $10 a share higher than what Disney proposed in December -- and $3 above Comcast’s bid from last week. Fox has accepted the offer, saying it provides more flexibility and other enhancements than the $65 billion Comcast deal.

The question now is how Comcast will respond. Chances are the cable giant will counterbid with something in the low-$40-a-share range, according to Jefferies Group LLC analyst John Janedis. But Disney may have another edge: It’s close to winning antitrust approval for its offer, according a person familiar with the matter. That means any bid from Comcast would come with more regulatory hurdles.
...
Disney’s new offer gives Fox shareholders the option to take their payment in the form of cash or stock, up to a 50-50 level. The previous agreement was an all-stock deal, and Comcast’s cash offer was seen as a significant enticement.

Disney also plans to take on about $13.8 billion of Fox’s net debt. That would lift the total transaction value above about $85 billion.

Fox had planned to hold a July 10 meeting for shareholders to vote on the previous Disney offer, which was hammered out in December. It said on Wednesday that the gathering will be delayed to give investors “the opportunity to evaluate the terms of Disney’s revised proposal and other developments to date.” That could give Comcast more time to come back with a fresh bid.
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22 Jun 2018 03:27

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-06-21/disney-promises-to-double-fox-asset-sales-to-win-antitrust-nod
Walt Disney Co. is prepared to sell off businesses generating as much as $1 billion in cash flow to win regulatory approval of its $71 billion bid to buy 21st Century Fox Inc.’s entertainment assets, it said in a filing Thursday.

The promise, made as part of Disney’s improved offer for the assets, is double the $500 million of earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization it initially offered to divest as part of the deal in December. The $1 billion in divestitures could include Fox’s regional sports networks, if the U.S. Department of Justice orders their sale.

Disney’s new offer intensified pressure on cable-TV operator Comcast Corp., which made a $65 billion bid for the Fox operations last week. The pair is battling over assets including Fox’s movie and TV studios, television networks such as FX, and multichannel providers such as Star India and Sky Plc. The Fox board shunned Comcast in favor of Disney six months ago, in large part due to concerns over potential regulatory problems with its offer.

The U.S. Justice Department is set to approve Disney’s deal in as soon as two weeks, a person familiar with the matter told Bloomberg News on Wednesday. Disney has agreed to sell some assets to address competition problems stemming from the tie-up, that person said.
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27 Jun 2018 10:29

Goldman Sachs to reap in $100 million for advising the Murdochs - good gig!!

https://invest-more.com/goldman-sachs-tops-100m-in-fees-from-fox-disney-deal/34477/
Goldman Sachs stands to make about $105m for advising 21st Century Fox in its $71bn asset sale to Walt Disney and for helping Rupert Murdoch finance his new broadcasting group, in one of the most lucrative deals ever for the investment bank.

A regulatory filing by the two media companies shows that Goldman received $58m for advising 21st Century Fox since August last year, when Mr Murdoch and Disney’s chief executive Bob Iger first met in Los Angeles to consider a transaction.

That fee collected by Goldman is lower than the $120m brought in by Morgan Stanley for advising Monsanto in its $66bn sale to Germany’s Bayer, which was the highest ever advisory fee paid to an investment bank, according to Thomson Reuters.

But in this case Goldman will also receive about $47m for providing a bridge loan and permanent financing to the new entity that will house the remainder of the Murdoch family broadcasting empire, including the Fox broadcast network and Fox News.

The big payout for Goldman reflects the close relationship that John Waldron, its co-head of investment banking, has established over the years with Mr Murdoch.

Mr Waldron was the closest adviser to the media tycoon during the demerger of 21st Century Fox and News Corp, its newspaper and publishing focused business, and the Murdochs’ failed attempt to buy Time Warner.
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28 Jun 2018 04:33

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-44633483
US regulators have cleared Walt Disney Co's plan to buy most of 21st Century Fox, removing a final barrier to the $71.3bn (£54.2bn) deal.

The approval requires the sale of Fox's regional sports networks in the US, due to competition concerns, the Justice Department's antitrust division said.

Disney, which had signalled willingness to sell the sports networks, said it was "pleased" with the decision.
...
The Justice Department said without the sale of the 22 regional sports networks, the deal may have led to higher prices for cable sports watchers in local markets, where Fox and Disney currently compete.

Currently, Fox's regional sports networks have more than 60 million subscribers and local rights to a majority of baseball and basketball teams.

Disney is the owner of ESPN and other local channels.
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29 Jun 2018 03:09

As Dawg rides stage 19 of TdF in the Pyrennes, Fox shareholders will be voting on the Disney deal -
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-06-28/fox-shareholders-said-to-vote-on-71-billion-disney-bid-july-27
Shareholders of 21st Century Fox Inc. are set to meet July 27 to vote on Walt Disney Co.’s $71.3 billion offer for its entertainment assets.

The special meeting is scheduled for 10 a.m. at the New York Hilton in midtown Manhattan, Disney said in a regulatory filing. Disney shareholders will also consider the transaction.
...
The strength of Disney’s currency and its smoother regulatory path make it “relatively easy” for Fox’s board to prefer a Disney bid “without risking compromise of their fiduciary obligation to shareholders,” analysts at MoffettNathanson said last week. “A Comcast bid for Fox carries far more regulatory risk than does a bid from Disney,” they said.
"Are you going to believe me or what you see with your own eyes?"

“It doesn’t matter what I do. People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”
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29 Jun 2018 04:56

Why all this matters again - Tour Racing Limited which is the company that "owns" Team Sky is 85% owned by Sky UK and 15% by 21 st Century Fox.

Fox in it's turn owns 39 % of Sky and is trying to buy up the remaining 61% (UK gov though is not happy with the Murdochs getting more media ownership in the UK)

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-42353545
If the Sky purchase is approved, that deal would probably go through before the Disney purchase of Fox assets. So the whole of Sky would then be likely to transfer to Disney's ownership.

If not, then just the 39% of Sky currently in Fox's stable passes to Disney.

Rupert Murdoch said: "If things go wrong, the existing [Sky] shares go to Disney. It will be up to them to decide what to do."

Either way Sky's future will lie primarily in Disney's hands.


Latest financial filing up to Dec 31 2016 for Tour Racing Limited -
https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/04078205/filing-history/MzE4NjM1OTA5M2FkaXF6a2N4/document?format=pdf&download=0
"Are you going to believe me or what you see with your own eyes?"

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08 Jul 2018 20:09

To pay $ 2.6 billion to the tax-man or not ... what would you do? :lol:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-06/murdoch-may-get-billions-picking-disney-stock-over-comcast-cash
Cash may be king but Walt Disney Co.’s stock-based offer for 21st Century Fox Inc. entertainment assets could give it a $3.5 billion edge over Comcast Corp.’s rival bid.

Comcast’s $65 billion all-cash deal could stick Rupert Murdoch and his family with an upfront federal tax bill of $2.6 billion for their 17 percent stake, compared with no taxes now for Disney’s $71 billion cash-and-stock offer if Murdoch takes his entire payday in Disney stock. That -- along with Disney’s higher offer -- means the Murdochs could net as much as $11.8 billion from Disney’s proposed deal, compared with $8.3 billion with Comcast.
"Are you going to believe me or what you see with your own eyes?"

“It doesn’t matter what I do. People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”
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10 Jul 2018 06:43

Word is the Murdochs have not given up getting all of Sky -

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-09/fox-is-said-to-ready-higher-sky-bid-with-u-k-approval-seen-near
21st Century Fox Inc. is preparing a higher offer for Sky Plc to counter Comcast Corp., according to people familiar with the matter, marking the latest twist in a global M&A contest between some of the world’s largest media companies.

The move is likely to come around the time of the formal approval by Britain for Fox’s bid, which is expected to come as soon as this week, said the people, who asked not to be identified as the deliberations are private.

Fox needs to raise its offer of 10.75 pounds per share for the 61 percent of the British pay-TV company it doesn’t already own, in order to challenge Comcast’s 12.50 pounds per share bid. Comcast, which already won U.K. approval for its Sky approach, has a deadline of Friday to put the 22 billion pound ($29 billion) proposal to Sky shareholders under U.K. takeover rules.
...
Fox first bid for Sky in December 2016, but the deal has been held up over concerns that the tie-up would give Murdoch too much influence over Britain’s media. U.K. Culture Secretary Matt Hancock has said he’s willing to let the takeover go ahead, provided Fox sells Sky’s 24-hour news channel to Disney. With a consultation period on the remedy having closed last week, the clock is ticking on Hancock’s final ruling.
"Are you going to believe me or what you see with your own eyes?"

“It doesn’t matter what I do. People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”
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11 Jul 2018 21:08

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-11/fox-raises-sky-offer-as-bidding-contest-with-comcast-heats-up
Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox Inc. boosted its bid for Sky Plc, adding pressure on Comcast Corp. to retaliate in a global game of M&A chess that’s being waged by the world’s biggest media companies.

Fox offered 14 pounds per share, valuing Britain’s top pay-TV company at 24.5 billion pounds ($32 billion). That’s 12 percent more than Comcast’s rival 22 billion-pound offer.

Now it’s up to Comcast to respond.
...
The clock was ticking on Fox to make a higher bid for Sky, because Comcast faces a deadline of Friday to formally deliver its offer documents to shareholders of the London-based company, under U.K. takeover rules.

The expectation from some analysts had been that Fox would wait for final U.K. approval before coming back with a higher bid, but with Prime Minister Theresa May’s government committing to release a decision on Thursday, Fox pulled the trigger.
"Are you going to believe me or what you see with your own eyes?"

“It doesn’t matter what I do. People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”
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12 Jul 2018 04:13

Boom! Comcast counter attacks!
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-11/comcast-boosts-sky-bid-topping-fox-offer-in-global-standoff
Comcast Corp. increased its takeover bid for Sky Plc to $34 billion, topping an offer from Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox Inc. and escalating a global standoff between the media giants.

Comcast, the largest U.S. cable company, is now offering 14.75 pounds a share for Sky, valuing Britain’s top pay-TV provider at 26 billion pounds, according to a statement Wednesday. That’s 5.4 percent above a 14 pound-a-share proposal from Fox, which already owns a stake in the European broadcaster. Fox acknowledged the increased bid in a statement late Wednesday.
...
Comcast has been expected to abandon its bid for Fox and focus instead on winning Sky, according to Jonathan Chaplin, an analyst at New Street Research LLC. “Of all the assets in the Fox portfolio, they probably view Sky as the most strategically important,” he said earlier in a note.
"Are you going to believe me or what you see with your own eyes?"

“It doesn’t matter what I do. People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”
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13 Jul 2018 22:13

Everything's friggin' "unique" now - Geezus! Disney support for the deal -
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-13/disney-s-71-billion-fox-bid-wins-backing-from-glass-lewis
Walt Disney Co.’s $71 billion deal with 21st Century Fox Inc. won the endorsement of influential proxy advisers Institutional Shareholder Services Inc. and Glass Lewis & Co., giving the entertainment giant another edge over rival suitor Comcast Corp.

Both firms recommended that Fox shareholders vote in favor of the transaction during a July 27 investor meeting, with Glass Lewis arguing that Disney offered “a unique, prospectively far-reaching opportunity” to capitalize on the acquisition. Disney is vying with Comcast to acquire a prized collection of Fox entertainment assets that includes the 20th Century Fox film and TV studios.

Disney increased its bid for the entertainment properties last month by about $10 a share to $38, countering a $35 offer by Comcast.

“The current offer represents compelling value,” ISS said in a report.
"Are you going to believe me or what you see with your own eyes?"

“It doesn’t matter what I do. People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”
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