Comcast Makes $31 Billion Offer to Acquire Sky

Comcast calls in City heavyweights for £22bn Sky bid

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Comcast said its bid of £12.50 a share was 16% higher than the 21st Century Fox offer.

The announcement saw Sky's share price soar. NY time, the stock was up 20 percent at 13.30 pounds ($18.48). It is also not clear if Disney would want to end up being partners with Comcast, in the event that Comcast wins majority control of Sky and Disney ultimately has Fox's 39 percent stake.

Chief Executive Roberts said the visit was one of a number of things that confirmed Sky as a "jewel" that his company should try to acquire, as Comcast looks to boost global revenues as growth in the United States slows.

Comcast would maintain Sky's United Kingdom headquarters and use its entertainment, distribution, and technology to help it "more effectively compete in the rapidly changing and intensely competitive entertainment and communications landscape", he said.

"I suggested that we jump in a taxi and go to one of the malls and get a demo of Sky in one of their shops".

Also advising 21st Century Fox are NY corporate partners Howard Ellin and Brandon Van Dyke from Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, as well as Simpson Thacher & Bartlett partners Patrick Ryan and Sinead O'Shea. Comcast has dipped its toes in the pool with a surprise bid for European pay TV company Sky, and that could wind up throwing a wrench into Disney's plans.

The competition regulator warned that in terms of the need to maintain plurality, the takeover could act against the interest of the public.

Fox responded by pledging to strengthen the independence of Sky News ahead of the Competition and Markets Authority's final report, which must be submitted by 1 May.

The proposed takeover has been in the pipeline for Murdoch since giving formal notification in March 2017.

Sky's company secretary Chris Taylor noted that the company had got an offer from Comcast. "A further statement will be made if appropriate".

Among Comcast's commitments that were seen as important for a government review of the takeover offer were a promise to keep Sky's West London headquarters campus and to support its continued content investment.

Disney, meanwhile was likely to launch its own direct offer to Sky shareholders, he said. "Sky is a very attractive business".

Shares of Sky increased as investors hope this new bid would push the two sides to offer yet another higher bid.

"As it is, Comcast has thrown its hat into the ring and is now seeking to meet with the Sky directors to flesh out the deal". At the time the deal was announced, 21st Century Fox said it remained "committed to completing its proposed acquisition of the shares in Sky it does not own".

In December past year, Walt Disney agreed to buy the bulk of 21st Century Fox's business, including its 39% Sky stake.

It also pits Roberts against Disney's Iger, a long time rival after Comcast tried to buy Disney for US$54 billion in 2004.

"This isn't a done deal yet though".

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