Disney Outbids Comcast for Fox's Assets With $71.3 Billion Cash and Stock Deal

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21st Century Fox and the Walt Disney Company today announced a new deal that increases the value of Disney's original December 2017 offer from $28 a share at $52.4 billion to $38 a share at $71.3 billion, with a new cash component. This agreement "is superior to the proposal" from Comcast made earlier this month, according to an unnamed representative speaking for Fox (via The Wall Street Journal).


Additionally, the new Fox-Disney deal states that Fox shareholders will be able to receive their consideration "in the form of cash or stock," subject to 50/50 proration. The updated deal comes six months after Disney first announced its intent to acquire certain parts of 21st Century Fox, including Twentieth Century Fox Film and Television Studios, Fox-related cable and international TV businesses, and Fox's 30 percent stake in Hulu, among other assets.

Comcast entered as a competitor earlier in June at $35 per share for a total of $65 billion -- an offer that Disney has now beat. Fox has mentioned in the past that talks with Disney were more advanced than any other potential buyer, and it appears that the two companies are trying to work out a deal that values Fox's assets in the wake of Comcast's increased bid.

Nothing is finalized yet, however, and if shareholders are thought to be favoring a cash-heavy deal, people familiar with the matter told WSJ that Disney is "in position to inject cash into its offer."
Some Fox shareholders might prefer a premium cash offer like the one Comcast is offering, even though the capital gains would be taxable. Other shareholders, particularly the large institutional shareholders that are Fox's biggest investors, tend to care much less about taxes, Mr. Willens added.
With either company, the deal will have to face regulatory hurdles and get approved by the Justice Department. However, Comcast waited to make its bid on Fox until a U.S. District Court Judge approved of the merger between AT&T and Time Warner, which set a precedent for similar cases. According to Comcast, the court's approval should "nullify" any of Fox's regulatory concerns, which is the reason Fox rejected Comcast's original offer in April 2018.

Article Link: Disney Outbids Comcast for Fox's Assets With $71.3 Billion Cash and Stock Deal
 
Consumers (who will actually pay for this): "Please sir, may I have some more?"

Please Disney, please jack up park tickets to... ohhhh... $300/day.

And please drive up the price of movie tickets to.... ohhh... $100/ticket.

And please...

(not to be confused with any idea that I would foresee a happy consumer outcome if Comcast gets Fox)
 
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ftaok

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Jan 23, 2002
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Honestly if it weren't for the Marvel tie-in I wouldn't care about this in the slightest.

But since Disney getting this done would mean enveloping X-Men and Fantastic 4 into the MCU....YAHOO!
While that would be exciting, I don't think Disney will pull the X-Men into the MCU. FF is a given seeing how awful those movies were. There were some exciting ideas floating around the web on how Marvel could introduce the FF into the established MCU. One interesting idea was that the FF were operational back in the 70s and launched into space and were lost in a time warp, only to come back in present day MCU along with their powers and Doctor Doom.

Reed could have been a contemporary with Hank Pym and Howard Stark.
 

dabocx

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Mar 27, 2018
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Does this mean will get the 20th Century Fox production logo back at the start of Star Wars films?
Doubtful but it does mean Disney would get the full rights for Episode 4 which was the only one they lacked. In my dreams that means they could do a 4k remaster of episode 4-6 theatrical cuts.
 
Does this have something to do with Apple products and services?
Yes, most directly: how much we'll be paying to rent the combined properties through iTunes. While we visualize this as some kind of clash of the corporate titans, the reality is that this will be paid for by us consumers. And less competition usually leads to higher prices.

Less directly: Apple is apparently in this business now with many shows in development. Which brings up the question: why isn't Apple buying this huge library of desirable content with a fraction of its nest egg instead of letting this become owned by (competitors) Disney or Comcast? If Apple is serious about breaking into the space, why do it on only original creations? Why not use a little of its cash hoard to buy a huge bank of content and gain control of many desirable franchises and tons of classic film already well received by the public?

Instead of only Planet of the Apps, this acquisition could get Apple Planet of the Apes. Apple could get control of XMen, Fantastic 4 etc and then do a Sony-type deal to "lease" (back?) use of the characters in Disney films. Or just turn around and reduce the cost of the whole deal by selling off the Marvel and Star Wars parts to Disney, keeping the rest of the vast Fox library of content at a net cost much lower than these numbers.

And, like Disney does with alternate brands owned by Disney, the stuff Directors want to do that is too risqué per Apple censors could roll out under one of the Fox brands, owned by Apple but not as associated with the Apple brand itself. There's already grumblings from various directors about Apple pinching bits of stories that cross into risqué. Haven't we already seen some rumors of some productions or producers departing projects over clashes with Apple over content (censorship)? If "Apple Productions" wants to draw some line at- say- PG ratings, an Apple Fox's line could start at- say- PG13+ (or knowing Apple, they'll probably need to tweak the system by rolling out PG11, especially if they can copyright such a mark and get licensing fees from others wanting to use it).

But what do I know? It's much better to just leave the pile of cash in the vault doing nothing... and much better to create white-white-white-washed original programming from scratch instead of doing both. If Apple did spend $72B cash, maybe the Executive diving board would be too far from the surface of the remaining pool of cash for comfort? And maybe the swimmers would be too impatient to wait for the deal to close, then turn around and sell Marvel properties + Star Wars 4-6 to Disney for maybe $25M-$30M of it to quickly refill the pool? I'm sure Disney would probably throw in some Fast Passes to sweeten the deal for Apple Inc too: "While we dump all this cash into the Apple vault(s), come shortcut the lines at any of our parks while your 'pool(s)' is closed."
 
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iAVERY

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Sep 11, 2016
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Yes it does. With Apple trying to get into the content arena, any news regarding the consolidation of said content, is relevant to Apple's services.
Apple needs to chill out and just let us stream all movies and tv shows on iTunes for $40 a month or something. Call it “Apple TV” and put it in the tv app.
 
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I'm sure Apple would love that. $40 times 30% right off the top equals $12/month for Apple, leaving $28/month to be divided up by ALL of the production companies and content owners that actually invested all the money in making all that programming. I'm sure the big Studios would love the idea of carving up tiny little slices of $28/month while getting themselves thoroughly under Apple's thumb like their music industry cousins.
 
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ArtOfWarfare

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Nov 26, 2007
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Disney is bidding $38/share, but FOX's stock is currently 25% higher than that... why are people paying so much more for FOX's stock than what Disney is offering? Why is FOX entertaining such low bids?
 
Disney is bidding $38/share, but FOX's stock is currently 25% higher than that... why are people paying so much more for FOX's stock than what Disney is offering? Why is FOX entertaining such low bids?
Because stock prices are driven by expectations of tomorrow, not reality of today. Why does Apple announce record earnings and AAPL shares often fall right after? Because stock buyers care about the future, not the present or the past.
  • Disney made a bid to buy.
  • Comcast made a bigger bid.
  • Disney makes a bigger bid.
  • What will Comcast probably do next?
  • Will some other player swoop in and join the auction?
Where there's more than one interested buyer all trying to buy the scarce (single) "product," there's room for the price of that "product" to get bid up and up and up.
 
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69650

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Does this have something to do with Apple products and services?
I was just thinking the same thing. It’s interesting news but this takeover isn’t going to impact on Apple’s efforts to create their own content and video streaming service. It’s not like cautious Cook is ever going to spend that much money on an acquisition.
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Apple needs to chill out and just let us stream all movies and tv shows on iTunes for $40 a month or something. Call it “Apple TV” and put it in the tv app.
I don’t think many people would be willing to spend $40/month when you can get Netflix or Amazon Prime for a lot less.
 
Disney aspires to have it's own robust & diverse streaming service to better compete with Netflix, iTunes, etc.

Potential Strategy (a close variation of which would work for Apple too if they would join these kinds of auctions): buy up content and make good chunks of it exclusive to your own service. Make Netflix, iTunes, Vudu, Amazon less appealing and DisneyFoxFlix more appealing. Combining Disney properties and Fox Properties into a new Netflix-like super service could be stiff competition for fledgling startup content houses like Apple and even well-established entities like Netflix.

What is the enduring gripe with Netflix? Good content keeps getting pulled, leaving behind less desirable content ("B-movies", etc). Along comes DisneyFoxFlix with A-movies and A-TV shows not available on Netflix, Amazon and maybe increasingly pulled from availability in iTunes, Vudu, etc. At some point, one MUST be drawn to DisneyFoxFlix for content... probably drawn away from Netflix, Amazon and maybe even Apple with desirable exclusives only available at DisneyFoxFlix.

And there's another view of how this is relevant to Apple products & services (not necessarily present, but future).

Next in line: maybe Paramount. Imagine DisneyFoxParamountFlix.

Next? Maybe Sony. Imagine DisneyFoxParamountColumbiaSonyFlix.

Next? Maybe MGM. Imagine DisneyFoxParamountColumbiaSonyMGMFlix.

Dreamworks? Remnants of The Weinstein Company? Lions Gate? All of Viacom?

But again, Apple Productions could put it's cash to use to go this way too. Imagine AppleFoxParamountColumbiaSonyMGMFlix with many desirable properties exclusively available through an AppleFlix service only on :apple:TV.

Else eventually it probably is DisneyFoxParamountColumbiaSonyMGMFlix and/or ComcastFoxParamountColumbiaSonyMGMFlix or maybe Disney & Comcast are the video equivalent of AT&T and Verizon in a few years, splitting ownership of the rest for duopoly-like control over the bulk of desirable video content.
 
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