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Fox and Disney shareholders approve deal for entertainment assets

July 28, 2018 2:15 AM
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NEW YORK: Twenty-First Century Fox Inc and Walt Disney Co said on Friday their shareholders voted to approve Disney's US$71 billion (RM288 billion) purchase of Fox's film and television assets.

Results were announced at both companies' special shareholders' meetings, held in New York.

Shares of Fox were down slightly, by 0.3% to US$45.25 (RM184) in afternoon trading, while Disney shares were down 0.7% to US$112.70 (RM456).

Disney was forced to sweeten its offer last month after Comcast Corp, the largest US cable company, made a US$66 billion (RM268 billion) bid for Fox's well-known TV shows and movie franchises, including the X-Men and The Simpsons.

The bidding between Comcast and Disney was part of a bigger battle in the entertainment industry as media companies spend tens of billions of dollars on deals to compete with Netflix Inc and Inc.

Last week, Comcast dropped its pursuit of Fox's film and television studios, cable networks and international TV businesses.

Disney's cash and the stock offer has already received approval from US regulators. In an agreement with the US Department of Justice, Disney, which owns sports network ESPN, said it would divest 22 of Fox's regional sports networks.

Disney still needs deal approval from more than a dozen countries, including China, Russia and regulators from the European Union.

Rupert Murdoch, who owns 17% of Fox's voting shares along with his family, could have faced a large capital gains tax bill under Comcast's all-cash offer.


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