Comcast Corp. made a long-awaited offer to acquire much of 21st Century Fox Inc., topping a previous proposal by Walt Disney Co. and setting up a bidding war for Rupert Murdoch’s media empire.

Comcast, the largest U.S. cable-TV provider, said its cash offer reflects a $65 billion value for Fox’s entertainment assets. At $35 a share, the bid represents a 19 percent premium over the Disney offer, the company said on Wednesday.

The move follows AT&T Inc.’s victory over the Justice Department in its antitrust battle to take over Time Warner Inc. That outcome is expected to spur a wave of media consolidation, emboldening companies to make offers they might otherwise have skipped.

Disney and Comcast are locked in a high-stakes contest for the entertainment assets, which include the Fox movie and TV studios, television networks such as FX, and multichannel providers like Star India and Sky Plc. With Wednesday’s bid, Comcast Chief Executive Officer Brian Roberts is seeking to disrupt Disney CEO Bob Iger’s plan to use Fox properties to bolster his company’s already-vast entertainment offerings.

Comcast first approached Fox last year with an informal proposal. Comcast bid 16 percent more than Disney for Fox’s …read more

Source:: Time – Business

      

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