There is a bidding war over who gets to own 21st Century Fox‘s entertainment assets. Recently Comcast made an all-cash offer of $65 billion to acquire Fox’s entertainment assets. This was significantly higher than The Walt Disney Company‘s not-so-official, as it turned out, $52 billion offer. At which point, Disney had only a few days to match or bring in a higher bid.
And according new reports, the Mouse House has done just that. The studio has recently sweetened their deal by adding some cash of their own to the previous stock-offer. This will take their total bid to $71 billion. Not only that, but it appears that Fox has accepted the deal. More on the story below.
Per Bloomberg, “the $38-a-share price is about $10 a share higher than what Disney proposed in December — and $3 above Comcast’s bid from last week.” The deal reportedly will give Fox more flexibility and enhancements that the Comcast deal couldn’t offer. However, there is still room for Comcast to make a counter offer.
As previously reported, the studio that ends up acquiring Fox would own the rights to their entertainment assets, which includes film franchises like X-Men, Fantastic Four, Deadpool, and more. As for the TV side of things, the new owners would also include the rights to The Simpsons, Family Guy, and more. They would also acquire a stake at Hulu.
Fox would hold on to their news, business, and sports assets to re-consolidate and re-brand themselves as New Fox.
While the move would increase their content, it would also limit the number of projects filmmakers could pitch their stories to. The operation would also oversee domestic television.
The latest bid may be the last one to be made as Disney’s offer makes it difficult to respond to. According to Bloomberg, “Comcast’s current bid was already poised to load the company up with debt, and its shares have fallen 18 percent this year.”
This latest bidding war comes after AT&T successfully merged with Time Warner, a merger that the U.S. Justice Department tried to prevent. However, the U.S. Dept seemed less interested in preventing the Disney and Fox merger from happening.
Regardless, it looks like this deal will be happening. Not only would Disney acquire Fox’s entertainment assets, but they would also be acquiring their $13.8 billion of Fox’s net debt. That would take the price up to $85 billion.
But not everything is set in stone. While the delay gives investors time to evaluate the terms of the deal with Disney, it also gives Comcast time to come back with a new bid of their own.
We will keep you up to date on any new developments should they come in.