Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA) will no longer compete with Disney for Fox’s entertainment assets and has instead focused on British TV service Sky. The bidding war with Disney ended when Comcast decided that the price for Fox’s assets was too high, according to a person familiar with the matter. Another obstacle for Comcast was the regulatory requirement to give up rights to Fox’s regional sports networks in the terms of the deal.
Disney will now go ahead with its bid of USD 71.3 Billion for Fox’s properties and a 39% stake in Sky. Comcast offered USD 34 Billion for Sky including Fox’s stake, but it’s unclear if Disney will let go of Sky. Comcast originally bid USD 65 Billion over Disney’s USD 52.4 Billion deal, forcing Disney to invest more for the Fox assets.
Comcast has turned its full attention on Sky since it could be a key asset to expand the Company’s presence beyond the U.S. Although Fox Studios and TV networks would have been a good addition to Comcast’s own Universal Studios and NBC TV assets, Sky can provide Comcast with global presence.
Comcast filed its offer documents for Sky on Friday, and shareholders have until August 22nd to complete the document to sign over shares to Comcast. When Comcast owns at least 50% Sky’s shares, it will own a majority and takeover the European TV provider. While Disney is focused on figuring out the details to integrate its acquisition, the question is still up in the air on whether they plan on topping Comcast’s offer for Sky.