Comcast challenges 21st Century Fox with £22.1B interest for Sky

Business | Tue 27 Feb | Author – Business & Finance
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The US media giant has placed interest in Sky with a £22.1 billion valuation, which it says will rival the interest of 21st Century Fox.

Comcast‘s possible all-cash offer of £12.50 per Sky share represents a premium of 16% on the current Fox terms. That valuation sees Fox value Sky at £18.5 billion.

This news saw Sky’s share price rise more than 20% to £13.33 in late-morning deals.

The interest from Comcast has further complicated Fox’s activity as it has agreed to sell its entertainment assets to Disney for $52 billion (£37 billion). This includes its 39% stake in Sky.

21st Century Fox is now under pressure to match this valuation.

The CEO of Comcast, Brian Roberts, said Sky would be “very valuable to [Comcast]” and it would help to “expand [the company’s] presence internationally.”

Comcast is the biggest cable operator in the US and owns NBC, E! and the Universal Pictures movie studio.

The competition regulator warned that in terms of the need to maintain plurality, the takeover could act against the interest of the public. Fox has said it will act to strengthen Sky News ahead of the Competition and Markets Authority‘s final report due on the first day of May.

21st Century Fox and Sky have not yet given official responses to the Comcast interest.