Comcast Corp. is preparing to go over the heads of the 21st Century Fox board and directly solicit Fox shareholders to reject the Walt Disney Co.’s $52.4 billion stock bid in favor of Comcast’s $65 billion cash offer, regulatory filings indicate. Comcast has hired MacKenzie Partners Inc. in New York to campaign and win support of big shareholders such as pension funds and institutional investors — a clear shot across the bow at Fox founder Rupert Murdoch and the Fox board. Comcast officials did not comment on Friday. But they described a proxy solicitation of Fox shareholders as a Plan B in the event that Comcast believed that the Fox board failed to consider its offer. >> READ MORE: Why Comcast wants to buy Fox, and beat out Disney The move shows how important the Fox assets are to Comcast’s future. Analysts have said that Fox’s entertainment assets could help transform Comcast into a far more important entertainment company that could … [Read more...] about Comcast prepares to take Disney fight directly to Fox shareholders, SEC filing says
In a surprisingly aggressive preemptive strike, the Walt Disney Co. reached a new agreement to buy the entertainment assets of 21st Century Fox for $71 billion in cash and stock, topping Comcast Corp.’s $65 billion all cash offer. Disney’s new offer is 36 percent higher than the one it reached with Fox in December. The announcement comes as Comcast had made it clear that it would like the Fox assets to expand globally and add to its content library — the same aims as Disney. Comcast had no immediate comment. “At a time of dynamic change in the entertainment industry, the combination of Disney’s and Fox’s unparalleled collection of businesses and franchises will allow us to create more appealing high-quality content, expand our direct-to-consumer offerings and international presence, and deliver more personalized and compelling entertainment experiences to meet growing consumer demand around the world,” Disney CEO Bob Iger said in statement … [Read more...] about Disney/Fox reach $71B deal, blowing away Comcast
With time running down, the board of 21st Century Fox has some big decisions to make as it meets on Wednesday to consider Comcast Corp.’s potentially hostile $65 billion offer for its entertainment businesses. The Fox board — which includes 87-year-old media mogul Rupert Murdoch and his sons Lachlan and James — has already agreed to sell the Fox portfolio to the Walt Disney Co. for $52.4 billion in Disney stock. But Comcast has offered 19 percent more in cash, based on Disney’s stock price on the day the Comcast made its offer, and filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission that could lead to a hostile proxy battle with the Fox board. First steps on Wednesday could be for the Fox board to take Comcast’s offer of $65 billion seriously and agree to share information on its businesses with Comcast. This could lead to negotiations between Comcast and Fox for a deal, say officials with knowledge of the process and an outside expert. The … [Read more...] about Will Fox’s board snub Comcast?
A wave of expected big media mergers would transform AT&T Inc. and Comcast Corp. into the two most indebted companies in the world, a standing that carries uncharted risks for investors in the firms’ bonds. AT&T has bought Time Warner Inc., and Comcast hopes to purchase most of 21st Century Fox Inc. The companies would carry a combined $350 billion of bonds and loans, according to data from Dealogic and Moody’s Investors Service. The purchases are meant to provide additional income to help the acquirers weather turmoil... … [Read more...] about Mergers Would Make AT&T, Comcast World’s Most Indebted Companies
A wave of expected major-media mergers would transform AT&T Inc. and Comcast Corp. into the two most indebted companies in the world, a standing that carries uncharted risks for investors in the firms’ bonds. If the deals are finalized—AT&T plans to buy Time Warner Inc. and Comcast to purchase 21st Century Fox Inc.—the companies will carry a combined $350 billion of bonds and loans, according to data from Dealogic and Moody’s Investors Service. The purchases are meant to provide additional income to help the acquirers... … [Read more...] about Mergers to Make AT&T, Comcast World’s Most Indebted Companies