US telecom giant Comcast is no longer competing with Disney to acquire 21st Century Fox – instead it is looking to take on Sky, an asset that once looked likely to become a part of Disney down the line.
With Disney's pursuit of Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox approved by US regulators in what will be a game-changing merger, Fox was looking to up its stake in UK-based Sky. UK regulators noted that if the Disney/Fox-merger was processed, either firm would have to honour the Sky purchase.
Reports claim that Comcast has now given up the fight for 21st Century Fox, but may be on a path to deny the UK asset to Fox – and by extension Disney. Comcast currently owns Universal and NBC in the US and would gain a substantial foothold in the UK if the deal was to go through.
Both deals have been under the regulatory microscope. UK regulators for instance, investigating monopoly fears, have ruled that Fox would have to offload Sky News to ensure UK media plurality.
Reports claim that Comcast’s £14.75 per-share bid, issued last week, is leading the way. Fox had previously bid £14-per share for the 61% of the company.