Comcast Trumps 21st Century Fox With £29b Sky Bid
UPDATE – In a published statement, Sky has confirmed it’s urging shareholders to “immediately” accept Comcast’s offer, asserting it presents “materially superior value”.
US cable giant, Comcast, has beat Murdoch-owned 21st Century Fox for a stake in Sky, with its offer of £17.28 a share surpassing Murdoch’s £15.67 a share – valuing Sky at a whopping £29.7 billion.
Ending 21 months of bidding, the news is set to significantly expand Comcast’s international presence.
Murdoch-owned 21st Century Fox states it’s considering its options, regarding the existing 39% stake it holds in Sky:
“We note the increased cash offer for the fully diluted share capital of Sky by Comcast, and that it has been recommended by the Independent Committee of Sky,” reads a published statement.
“21st Century Fox is considering its options regarding its own 39 per cent shareholding in Sky and will make a further announcement in due course”
“Sky is a remarkable story and we are proud to have played such a significant role in building the incredible value reflected today in Comcast’s offer.”
The winning bid reflects more than double Sky’s former value – before Fox put Sky in play nearly two years ago.
Considered a ‘blind auction’, neither party was aware who was bidding, notably in the final rounds.
Comcast’s bid is sharp increase versus its £12.50/share offer in February, and Fox’s £10.75/share bid late 2016.
Despite its winning bid, a takeover isn’t a certainly unless Comcast can win the support of over 50% of Sky’s shareholders. Commentators question Fox’s reaction, with the takeover tipped to be the biggest in European media history.
The news comes as media companies scramble to combat streaming giants such as Netflix.