US Cable Giant Comcast Outbids Fox's Offer to Buy Sky

By Kim Snaith on at

We already know that Murdoch-owned Fox made a deal to buy out the 61% of Sky it doesn't already own has long been in the works, but today a rival bid has landed on the table. Comcast, the largest cable TV provider in the US, has made an offer to beat Murdoch's.

The offer from 21st Century Fox was £18.5bn, and Comcast has seen and raised that to a whopping £22.1bn. That works out at £12.50 per share - 16% higher than Fox's offer.

Considering that Fox's takeover of Sky has been challenged by the Competition and Markets Authority under concerns of media plurality — the Murdoch family already owns a massive proportion of news outlets in the UK — a competitor's bid from Comcast might actually be well-received. Comcast owns Universal Pictures and NBC, and has already pledged to "maintain Sky News' existing brand and culture".

Analysts have already said that the Comcast deal is likely to go ahead - a higher bid is obviously much more attractive to Sky, and because "it would come with much lower regulatory risk". There's still time for Fox to come back with a counter-offer though, so a bidding war may well commence.

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