Comcast Ends Bidding War With Disney For Fox Entertainment Assets

The company announced on Thursday it planned to end its pursuit of 21st Century Fox assets.

Comcast Corporation announced on Thursday that it would end its bid for Fox assets. A view of the company's headquarters is pictured on Aug. 18, 2015 in Philadelphia. Photo: Cindy Ord/Getty Images for Comcast

By Andrew N. White, International Business Times

Comcast announced it has ended its billion-dollar bid for Twenty-First Century Fox's entertainment assets, leaving Walt Disney Co. in position to make the acquisition.

The cable company, instead, said it would put its focus on buying British broadcaster Sky. "Comcast does not intend to pursue further the acquisition of the Twenty-First Century Fox assets and, instead, will focus on our recommended offer for Sky," it said in press release on Thursday. Fox currently owns 39 percent of Sky.

Comcast and Disney were in a bidding battle over several of Fox’s assets, including its FX and National Geographic channels, 22 regional sports networks, and its 30 percent share of streaming service Hulu, according to USA Today. Not included were its Fox News and Fox Business channels.

[post_ads]"I’d like to congratulate Bob Iger [Disney CEO] and the team at Disney and commend the Murdoch family and Fox for creating such a desirable and respected company," Brian Roberts, Comcast's CEO, said in a statement.

This means Disney's chances of purchasing Fox greatly improves. Shareholders from both sides are set to vote on the deal on July 27. The Philadelphia–based firm in June outbid Disney’s original offer of $52.4 billion for Fox’s assets with its own offer of $65 billion in cash. Disney first announced its plan to acquire Fox in December.

Comcast’s first offer for Fox’s entertainment assets came in November, according to Reuters. However, Fox opted to go with Disney because it felt a Comcast deal would not get antitrust approval. Last month, the Department of Justice reportedly approved the Disney-Fox acquisition.

"Our incredible enthusiasm for this acquisition and the value it will create has continued to grow as we’ve come to know 21st Century Fox’s stellar array of talent and assets," Iger said in a statement. "We’re extremely pleased with today’s news, and our focus now is on completing the regulatory process and ultimately moving toward integrating our businesses."

Meanwhile, shares of Comcast (CMCSA) went up 2.7 percent following news of the company's decision. Disney (DIS) shares also rose while 21st Century Fox (FOXA) shares went down, according to Yahoo Finance.


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Business News: Comcast Ends Bidding War With Disney For Fox Entertainment Assets
Comcast Ends Bidding War With Disney For Fox Entertainment Assets
The company announced on Thursday it planned to end its pursuit of 21st Century Fox assets.
Business News
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