Just hours after 21st Century Fox raised their bid for Sky, Comcast has revised their offer to presumably set off a full-fledged bidding war.
- As Reuters reports, early today Fox increased its Sky bid to $32.5 billion or £14 per share — up from their original £10.75 a bid — to top Comcast’s offer of £12.50 per share.
- However, CNBC now reports that Comcast is raising its bid to $34 billion (£14.75 per share).
- Fox originally sought to acquire the rest of Sky in 2016 but the matter has been held up by U.K. regulators.
- On that note, Jeremy Wright, the new UK Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, who recently replaced Matt Hancock, announced that he will issue the final decision on Fox’s purchase of Sky on July 12th, 2018.
- If Fox’s deal to purchase all of Sky closes, The Walt Disney Company has already agreed to purchase Sky News regardless of whether their acquisition of the rest of the 21st Century Fox assets is successful.
- Additionally, Fox said earlier that Disney offered its consent to their increased bid, adding “In the event that the Disney transaction does not complete due to the failure to obtain regulatory approvals or in certain other limited circumstances, Disney has agreed to reimburse 21CF for an amount equal to the difference between the cash consideration (i.e. £14.00) and £13.00 for each Sky share purchased by 21CF pursuant to the increased 21CF offer (plus any interest and fees on such amount).”
- For more on all the recent Fox/Disney/Comcast/Sky news, check out our roundup of this past week’s stories.
What They’re Saying
- Comcast: “Comcast announced that its increased superior cash offer has been recommended by the Sky Independent Committee of Directors. Comcast has long admired Sky and believes it is an outstanding company and a great fit with Comcast. Today’s announcement further underscores Comcast’s belief and its commitment to owning Sky. Comcast has committed financing available to satisfy the full cash consideration payable to Sky shareholders under the terms of the acquisition. Comcast has already received relevant regulatory approvals in the EU, Austria, Germany, Italy, and Jersey. Comcast expects to complete the acquisition before the end of October 2018.”
- 21st Century Fox (earlier today): “As the founding shareholder of Sky, we have remained deeply committed to bringing these two organizations together to create a world-class business positioned to deliver the very best entertainment experiences well into the future. We strongly believe that a combined 21CF and Sky will be a powerful driver for the continued growth and vibrancy of the UK and broader global creative industries. The enhanced scale and capabilities of the combination will enrich Sky’s ability to continue on its mission for years to come, especially at a time of dynamic change in our industry. This transformative transaction will position Sky so that it can continue to compete within an environment that now includes some of the largest companies in the world, but none of whom have demonstrated the same local depth of investment and commitment to the UK and to Europe. We said when we announced our proposed acquisition of Sky that we were firmly committed to UK’s creative industries and the contribution they make to the UK economy. We remain committed to the UK and believe that our offer for Sky will bring the best value for all the company’s stakeholders and are delighted that the Independent Board of Sky has recommended our offer to its shareholders.”