Comcast on Wednesday confirmed that it will attempt to outbid Disney for 21st Century Fox and some of its subsidiaries. The deal would be subject to approval by U.S. regulators.
Comcast said only that it’s in “advanced stages” of preparing an all-cash offer, which would have to top Disney’s $52.4 billion in stock. The bid would specifically cover the businesses Fox has agreed to sell to Disney, excluding Fox News, Fox Business, the Fox Broadcasting Company, and “certain other assets.”
“The structure and terms of any offer by Comcast, including with respect to both the spin-off of ‘New Fox’ and the regulatory risk provisions and the related termination fee, would be at least as favorable to Fox shareholders as the Disney offer,” Comcast added.
No matter which way the deal for 21st Century Fox winds up, it would shrink the number of companies in control of the media market. Comcast already owns internet and cable services, plus it owns NBC, Universal, DreamWorks, and other media properties, such as a 30% stake in Hulu.
Disney also owns a stake in Hulu, as well as movie studios, (including Marvel), ABC, ESPN, and the various Disney channels.
An acquisition by either company would need to be approved by U.S. regulators, which despite a business-friendly atmosphere in Washington might be concerned about the deal.