Sky agrees takeover bid by media tycoon Rupert Murdoch
00:51, Dec 17, 2016
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"We have been thoughtful, disciplined and focused as we have contemplated the best use of our capital to drive the growth of the business into the future", said Lachlan Murdoch, 21st Century Fox's executive chairman, during a conference call with investment analysts Thursday.
The deal valuing Sky at £18.5 billion comes five years after Australian-born media mogul Murdoch failed to clinch a takeover after a notorious phone-hacking scandal at his newspaper empire.
Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox has reached an agreement to take over broadcaster Sky for £11.7 billion (€14 billion).
News Corporation subsequently demerged its film and television assets outside Australia into a new company, 21st Century Fox, leaving it as a business focused on newspaper titles from around the world - including The Sun, The Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Australian and the New York Post - as well as the book publisher Harper Collins.
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For the Murdochs, the timing of the deal is right: Momentum behind United States stocks continues to build as traders bet that President-elect Donald Trump will follow through on promises to cut regulations and reduce taxes, helping to drive earnings growth.
Murdoch's Sky bid follows AT&T Inc.'s $85.4 billion deal earlier this year to acquire Time Warner Inc., owner of HBO, CNN and Warner Bros., as traditional media push for scale to combat online video services like Netflix and Amazon Prime. Sky is much more than a satellite distribution company. However, the company abandoned the attempt after several of the company's tabloids became embroiled in a the so-called phone hacking scandal.
It plans to buy the remaining stake through a scheme of arrangement, which means it needs the approval of investors holding 75 percent of the shares.
After that, Ms Bradley would have another 30 days to approve it, with or without conditions, or block it.
Then, as now, the dominant provider of news in the United Kingdom is the BBC. Murdoch said he expects "no meaningful concessions" will need to be made, as the deal is reviewed by the European Union over competition and potentially by regulators in the UK.
Sky traces its origins to Sky Television - which was launched by Rupert Murdoch in February 1989.
Sky broadcasts the 24-hour Sky News channel, blockbuster movies and live English Premier League football, and also provides Internet and telephone services.
Royal London has a 0.36 percent stake in Sky, it said in the statement. Although News Corp. and Fox are separate entities, the Murdoch family controls both with 39% of the voting shares.
People familiar with the matter have told Reuters that Fox pounced after Britain's vote to leave the European Union in June sent the pound down about 15 percent against the US dollar and Sky's share price tumbling.
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