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Disney Buys Fox – The Mouse that Roared

Monster media deal if it makes it past anti-trust. It begs the question why is Rupert Murdoch moving from buyer to seller.

women will take this fucker down too… we are the truth 

The relentless, unstoppable force that spooked Murdoch and Lowy

#Disney Buy #FOX For £52 Billion!

A deal has been reached for Disney to purchase the bulk of 21st Century Fox’s business for $52.4bn (£39bn). In short, the purchase includes Fox’s film and television studios, as well as its 39% stake in satellite broadcaster Sky. Disney will take over the NatGeo network, Star TV, Fox’s movie and TV studios and its stakes in Sky and Hulu, including parts of the business that focus on regional…

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As Rupert Murdoch unloads $52.4 billion worth of assets to Disney, one thing is clear: he is doubling down on Fox News.

Thursday’s blockbuster deal, in fact, may even provide an opportunity for the [right-wing] cable news network to expand its impact.

For the most part, Murdoch has kept Fox News’ brand separate from that of his local stations and the national Fox broadcast network. But as the Australian-born mogul strips away his entertainment properties to create what he called “the new Fox” – essentially, Fox News, Fox Business Network, the national Fox sports networks, his broadcast network and local stations – several analysts suggested that the deal may provide more opportunities for Fox News to extend its footprint into the broadcast realm. The new Fox could look to acquire other local stations, as well, analysts say…

As part of the deal, Murdoch parted with the 20th Century Fox television and movie studio, leading to an unusual situation: the new Fox company still owns a national broadcast television network and 28 local stations, but no longer has a studio to produce shows for them. If the deal with Disney, which also included assets like the FX Network and National Geographic, means that Fox is moving away from entertainment content and toward news and sports, Ives said that it follows that news content could get more prominent play on Fox’s broadcast network…

The deal happened at the same time that local television station giant Sinclair is in the process of acquiring Tribune Broadcasting, a deal which would give the company access to 72 percent of TV households in America. Rumors have swirled that Sinclair has designs on amping up its news programming, and the company has had to deny reports that it was courting disgraced former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly.

One potential downside, said Joseph Bonner, a senior analyst for communications and technology at Argus Research, is that the loss of other cable networks like FX may give the new Fox less leverage in negotiating carriage fees with cable providers. Fox News remains one of the most in demand cable networks, though, and on the investor call, Murdoch did not seem too concerned over the issue.

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Disney Buys Fox Film and TV Units for 52.4 Billion

Walt Disney Co has struck a deal to buy film, television and international businesses from Rupert Murdoch’s Twenty-First Century Fox Inc for $52.4 billion in stock, giving the world’s largest entertainment company an arsenal of shows and movies to combat growing digital rivals Netflix Inc and Amazon.com Inc. [ Read More ]

Disney to buy Most of 21st Century Fox’s Assets for $52.4bn

The Walt Disney Company on Thursday revealed it has reached a deal to obtain most of…

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Walt Disney Company’s Bob Iger might have just secured the deal of a lifetime as Disney acquired large parts of 21st Century Fox in an all-stock deal valued at $52.4 billion or $66.1 billion including debt. Iger previously acquired Marvel, Pixar, and Lucasfilm. Disney will acquire Fox’s film and TV studio, National Geographic, FX, regional sports networks, Star India and other international…

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Woohoo, Murdoch is out of Sky! Lots of other good news in this article too.

The Walt Disney Co. has set a $52.4 billion, all-stock deal to acquire 20th Century Fox and other entertainment and sports assets from Rupert Murdoch’s empire. The deal between Disney and 21st Century Fox marks a historic union of Hollywood heavyweights and a bid by Disney to bolster its core TV and film businesses against an onslaught of new competitors in the content arena.

Key elements of the transaction unveiled Thursday morning:

The deal values the 21st Century Fox assets in the transaction at $66.1 billion, including $13.7 bllion in 21st Century Fox debt.
Disney chairman-CEO Bob Iger has extended his contract with the company for another two years, through the end of 2021, in order to oversee the integration of the assets.
21st Century Fox shareholders will receive 0.2745 Disney shares for each Fox share held
21st Century Fox will spinoff Fox Broadcasting Co., Fox Sports, Fox News, Fox Television Stations and a handful of other assets into a new company that will have revenue of $10 billion and earnings of about $2.8 billion.
21st Century Fox will continue to pursue its acquisition of the remaining 61% stake in Euro satcaster Sky that it does not already own with the intention of Disney taking it over when the Disney-Fox transaction is completed.
Disney expects to realize $2 billion in cost savings from combining Disney and Fox’s overlapping businesses within two years of the deal’s closing.
“The acquisition of this stellar collection of businesses from 21st Century Fox reflects the increasing consumer demand for a rich diversity of entertainment experiences that are more compelling, accessible and convenient than ever before,” said Iger. “We’re honored and grateful that Rupert Murdoch has entrusted us with the future of businesses he spent a lifetime building, and we’re excited about this extraordinary opportunity to significantly increase our portfolio of well-loved franchises and branded content to greatly enhance our growing direct-to-consumer offerings. The deal will also substantially expand our international reach, allowing us to offer world-class storytelling and innovative distribution platforms to more consumers in key markets around the world.”

21st Century Fox chairman Rupert Murdoch said: “We are extremely proud of all that we have built at 21st Century Fox, and I firmly believe that this combination with Disney will unlock even more value for shareholders as the new Disney continues to set the pace in what is an exciting and dynamic industry. Furthermore, I’m convinced that this combination, under Bob Iger’s leadership, will be one of the greatest companies in the world. I’m grateful and encouraged that Bob has agreed to stay on, and is committed to succeeding with a combined team that is second to none.”

Disney is betting on an ambitious purchase of a sizable chunk of 21st Century Fox, hoping that more cable networks, production studios and other properties will buoy it into the future as it dives into the direct-to-consumer streaming distribution business with sports and entertainment services planned to launch in 2018 and 2019, respectively. To feed those new pipelines, Disney is expanding its content production infrastructure with the acquisition of 20th Century Fox, a cable group that includes FX Networks, National Geographic and 300-plus international channels, and 22 regional sports networks. Also included is Fox’s 30% stake in Hulu, 50% share of Endemol Shine Group, the Star India satellite service, and Fox’s 39% interest in Euro satellite broadcaster Sky.

Staying with 21st Century Fox is the Fox broadcast network and its 28 TV stations, the Fox News and Fox Business channels, and the national Fox Sports 1 and Fox Sports 2 networks.

As Disney’s empire expands, another one will shrink. The deal, telegraphed in early November when word first surfaced the two companies had sounded each other out about a possible deal, initially shocked industry insiders. Under Rupert Murdoch, Fox has long been a swashbuckling builder. Murdoch has never shied away from attempting what once seemed impossible, from launching Fox Broadcasting Co. as the fourth national broadcast network in 1986 to acquiring the Wall Street Journal in 2007 to revving up Fox Sports as a national competitor to ESPN in 2013.

But the sale reflects rising uncertainty about the economics of traditional media outlets as digital technology forces massive change in the way people consume their news, movies and TV programs. In a world of tech giants such as Facebook, Amazon, Apple and Google with global reach, conglomerates like 21st Century Fox became small by comparison, despite the strength of its brands and content-producing expertise.

“With many pressures hitting the media industry, Fox’s potential moves make immense sense,” said media-industry analyst Michael Nathanson in a recent research note. Fox can bank on strong revenue from affiliate fees from its remaining TV assets, and use its sports rights; passionate Fox News views fan base; and big-audience broadcast events for leverage. “Paring down their asset base would not change this hand,” he said.

The decision by the Murdoch to sell comes a little more than two years after Rupert Murdoch handed control of 21st Century Fox to his sons, James and Lachlan. There’s been much speculation about 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch moving to a top role at Disney after the sale. Lachlan Murdoch, executive chairman, meanwhile, is expected to remain with the reconfigured 21st Century Fox.

For Disney, the acquisition provides new heft, and even gives it more control over some of the content that fuels its business.

Fox owns the studio, for example, that produces the ABC hit “Modern Family.” Now Disney will take control of the program, and benefit from syndication and other distribution of the series. The 20th Century Fox studio has the rights to make movies for Marvel characters like “X-Men” the result of deals struck before Disney purchased Marvel in 2009. Fox also controls rights to the one “Star Wars” film that is not under Disney’s aegis – the first movie in the franchise, “Star Wars: A New Hope.”

More importantly, Disney will gain access to overseas markets with Fox’s interest in Sky. 21st Century Fox has been working for months to purchase the shares of Sky it does not own, but the process has so far been tamped down by British regulators, who have expressed wariness of business operations at Fox News. With that unit remaining with the Murdochs, Disney may have its own opportunity to buy Sky in whole and gain a new perch in overseas distribution.

The deal also gives Disney majority control of Hulu, as Disney also owns a 30% stake in the streaming giant. But that sets up a potential clash over the direction of the company with Comcast and Time Warner, who together own the remaining interest in Hulu. The expectation is that Disney will try to buy out those stakes, although Comcast may not be inclined to sell given that Disney intends to launch its own OTT services to compete with cable and other MVPDs.

Disney will gain ballast in the world of TV programming, by taking on the National Geographic channels, as well as the premium drama and comedy of the FX Networks outlets that have thrived under leader John Landgraf. Disney’s current portfolio of cable networks focuses largely on kids and families, not on the viewers who are buoying operations like HBO, Showtime, AMC and FX. Many of Disney’s networks take only limited advertising. While the larger group of TV networks gives the company more say at the negotiating table with distributors it means the company can tap a broader flow of advertising dollars as well.

The move is not without risk for seller and buyer. Can Fox make a go of things with an early-stage cable-sports operation; two cable networks that aim for a particular broad niche of people with the same political leaning; and a broadcast network that has flailed since the demise of the original “American Idol” in 2016? And will the new properties offset some of the operating troubles Disney has had with its two best-known properties, ESPN and ABC? ESPN remains the kind of sports TV, but in recent years it has lost subscribers while under obligations to pay out millions in lucrative rights fees to the nation’s sports leagues. And ABC has struggled to gain a foothold in the ratings, despite the recent success of Shonda Rhimes-produced dramas like “Grey’s Anatomy” and ” How to Get Away With Murder.”

The Disney-Fox deal has prodded chatter that the remaining 21st Century Fox assets will be recombined with News Corp., the publishing side of the Murdoch empire that was split off from the entertainment and media side in 2013. Even as the ink is barely dry on the Disney agreement, already there’s speculation about the Murdochs considering other transactions with its remaining networks.

“The new Fox will draw upon the powerful live news and sports businesses of Fox, as well as the strength of our Broadcast network,” Rupert Murdoch said in a statement. “It is born out of an important lesson I’ve learned in my long career in media: namely, content and news relevant to viewers will always be valuable. We are excited by the possibilities of the new Fox, which is already a leader many times over.”

Georg Szalai and Paul Bond, The Hollywood Reporter:

The deal will make Rupert Murdoch, co‑executive chairman of Fox, and sons James (CEO) and Lachlan (co‑executive chairman), key shareholders of Disney stock. Fox shareholders will end up with about a 25 percent stake in Disney, with the Murdoch family trust owning around 5 percent, according to Bloomberg estimates.

It is understood that James Murdoch could get offered a senior Disney executive role that he would take on once the transaction closes, but the companies didn’t immediately announce anything about his future on Thursday.

God dammit. I had been looking forward to Disney collecting up all these amazing properties, but the Murdoch stain