What next with Fox-Disney-Comcast ?

MUMBAI: Part poker, part chess. That's exactly how the Disney-Comcast bidding war for Rupert Murdoch's entertainment conglomerate - 21 Century Fox - is being played out. The intense, see-saw battle for the media empire, which includes Hollywood studios, cable networks and streaming businesses, isn't nearing its end just yet. Nine days out of 10, $70 billion will get you whatever your want in life. But when you're up against Comcast, the tenth day is the one that matters and even $70 billion might not be enough.

According to analysts and industry insiders, Comcast is set to return to the negotiating table with a new and improved offer in the  low-to-mid $40s a share range. This could effectively take the bidding to $80 billion, 10 more than Disney's cash and stock offer.

Disney’s new bid on Tuesday, was 35 per cent higher than its earlier offer and close to $6 billion more than Comcast’s. But as things stand, they could end up paying more than they'd anticipated.

Why? Because Comcast isn't likely to budge given the pressure on its pay-TV business. Hence in its attempt to diversify and attain scale, the Fox bid is an important play for the company's strategy going forward.

However, the Disney executives know that the six-month head start they enjoy over Comcast in terms of regulatory review, could end up swinging this deal in their favour. Irrespective of what the winning bid is, a Disney-Fox deal, will get past the regulators far quicker than a Comcast-Fox deal is big boss Bob Iger's belief. 

And Murdoch understands this. He also understands how eager Bob Iger and Brian Roberts are to shake his hand in order to land some of the world's hottest properties - 20th Century Fox film studio, the FX and National Geographic cable channels, almost two dozen regional sports networks, a stake in Sky and Star India.

A handful of investment analysts are watching with their faces grimacing in pain. They worry that the debt both the mouse house and Comcast will take on in their hunger to swallow up Fox could topple them over. But both Iger and Roberts are not perturbed by the carping. 

We now await the next instalment of this blockbuster. Disney's made its move, Comcast is on the verge of making one. Call it the chess board or the poker table, Murdoch owns them both.

Latest Reads
Bigg Boss 14 finale to happen next week?

MUMBAI: Twists and turns abound in Bigg Boss and the show is set to introduce yet another shocker in the upcoming episode. According to a promo released by the makers of the show, host Salman Khan will be seen informing the housemates that the finale of Bigg Boss 14 will be held in the coming week...

Television TV Channels GECs
NBF hails Supreme Court of India upholding human liberty

The News Broadcasters Federation hails supreme court of India, upholding sacrosanct principle of human liberty in its judgement providing interim relief to Arnab Goswami, MD and editor in chief of Republic Media Network.

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
ITW Playworx wins sponsorship rights of ADT10 season 4

NEW DELHI: Ten Sports has awarded ITW Playworx the sponsorship rights of the Abu Dhabi T10 (ADT10) season 4. The fast-paced and pulsating ADT10 tournament is back with its fourth edition for all cricket enthusiasts around the world, and will commence from 28 January – 6 February 2021 at Zayed...

Television TV Channels Sports
Banijay confirms internal data theft in cyber attack

MUMBAI: Independent production company Banijay has admitted that internal data was stolen in a cyber attack last week, potential impacting hundreds of current and former employees. The company said that certain personnel data as well as commercially sensitive information may have been compromised....

Television Production House Post Production
Madras HC issues interim injunction against sexually explicit ads

KOLKATA: The Madurai bench of the Madras high court has issued an interim injunction against programmes or advertisements on TV channels displaying obscenity. In addition to that, the judges sought response from MIB on censorship of programmes telecast on channels. “Some advertisements though look...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
Watch Hindi television premiere of the ‘The Grudge’, only on &pictures

MUMBAI: Ever imagined what it would be like to step into a house that is cursed by a vengeful ghost. Would you dare to go inside it? Well, this Friday the 27 November at 9pm, gather all the courage you got as ab darr hoga full on as &pictures will take you on a bone chilling ride with the Hindi...

Television TV Channels Movie Channels
Zee TV introduces a gamified filter for Brahmarakshas 2 on Instagram and Facebook

MUMBAI: After regaling audiences with three engaging stories in the festive month of October that capture the pulse of the emerging middle class India and the evolving relationship dynamics of society, Zee TV  now offers its viewers an escape into the world of fantasy with another intriguing season...

Television TV Channels Movie Channels
Zee Keralam celebrates second anniversary, thanks viewers for the exciting two years

MUMBAI: Zee Keralam, the hit entrant in the Malayalam entertainment TV arena, has completed two years of thriving existence. On the day of their second anniversary, Zee Keralam has brought out a brand film with the tag ‘Avesham Randiriatti’ featuring everyone from the Zee Keralam family including...

Television TV Channels Regional
No prima facie evidence against Arnab Goswami in abetment to suicide case: SC

Detailing the reasons for granting interim bail to Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami in its 11 November judgement, the Supreme Court highlighted that the bail will remain in force for four weeks, even after the Bombay high court decides on the journalist-cum-businessman’s plea to quash the...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories

* indicates required