Disney's Acquisition of Fox Approved, but Must Sell Off 22 Regional Fox Sports Networks

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jun 27, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    After months of scrutiny in an ongoing antitrust case, the United States Department of Justice today granted The Walt Disney Company approval to acquire 21st Century Fox's entertainment assets for $71.3 billion, on one new condition: Disney must divest 22 regional sports networks owned by Fox to an "acceptable" buyer. Removing these networks from the acquisition "would resolve the competitive harm" that has been previously raised in the antitrust lawsuit, the Department said.

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    If Disney did acquire Fox and the 22 regional sports networks, the original complaint argued that the proposed acquisition would "likely result" in multichannel video programming distributors paying higher prices for cable sports programming in the designated markets. This would also inflate television subscription prices in the process, the Department pointed out.

    Now, Disney has agreed to sell the 22 networks to a buyer that the Justice Department deems "acceptable," rather than continue the ongoing merger investigation. After the acquisition closes, Disney will have 90 days in which to sell all of the designated networks to the buyer, otherwise the court will appoint a trustee to force the sale.

    This will ensure a competitive market remains in place in each region, Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim explained.
    The specific regional sports networks in question include the following:

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    Disney is now believed to have surpassed the last major hurdle in the deal and should be nearing the end of the acquisition process, although regulatory approvals from other countries are still required. Competitive offers could also still appear, potentially from Comcast, although Fox has remained vocal about its preference for Disney to win its entertainment assets.

    As outlined in the original announcement last December, these assets include Twentieth Century Fox Film and Television Studios and Fox-related cable and international TV businesses. Movie assets that would become Disney-owned include Avatar, X-Men, Fantastic Four, and Deadpool, and TV shows include The Simpsons, This Is Us, and The Americans. Disney would also get Fox's 30 percent stake in Hulu and become a majority owner of the streaming service.

    Article Link: Disney's Acquisition of Fox Approved, but Must Sell Off 22 Regional Fox Sports Networks
     
  2. opeter macrumors 68000

    opeter

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    #2
    Interesting. So Comcast is out of the game or can still "mix the water"?

     
  3. elvisimprsntr, Jun 27, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2018

    elvisimprsntr macrumors 6502

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    God, let’s hope Crapcast doesn’t get FOX Sports regionals.
     
  4. oneMadRssn macrumors 601

    oneMadRssn

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    #4
    I didn't know YES was owned by Fox. Yet another reason to hate the Yankees.
     
  5. euvnairb macrumors regular

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    #5
    I think Comcast is still in it. This simply states that the Disney offer is approved by the justice department. Comcast can still come in and outbid Disney and then they'd have to undergo similar scrutiny with the justice department (and other governmental organizations). I hope Disney wins this though -- because I want to see an xmen + avengers movie haha.
     
  6. Giantscruz macrumors member

    Giantscruz

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    #6
    Cool. So we can have a legit Fantastic 4 and a more consistent X-Men!
     
  7. rjohnstone macrumors 68040

    rjohnstone

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    #7
    Disney's majority stake in Hulu is what bugs me.
    The sports networks being divested were a given since Disney already owns ESPN.
     
  8. Kaibelf macrumors 68020

    Kaibelf

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    #8
    I actually disagree, because this makes it more likely that Disney won't pull their ABC properties from Hulu in favor of their own streaming service they have to build up now. Instead, it's more likely that the Disney kids stuff will be an add-on package and Hulu users won't have to deal with a CBS-style situation.
     
  9. elvisimprsntr macrumors 6502

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    X-men vs Avengers
     
  10. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #10
    I think once Disney raised its offer to 71 Billion that basically pushed Comcast out. Not for nothing, but I can see Comcast buying those 22 affiliates and helping their nbc sports channel.
     
  11. campyguy macrumors 68040

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    Pleased to no end that Comcrap didn't pony up another $10B - my frickin' internet costs here are steep enough...
    I love the Bronx Bombers, let me count the rings..., er, ways. :p
     
  12. BuffaloTF macrumors 6502a

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    Sell them back to New Fox...?

    They're keeping the national Fox Sports anyway. I was actually looking forward to this being part and maybe ESPN taking the TSN approach with regional coverage married up to the national.
     
  13. ArtOfWarfare macrumors G3

    ArtOfWarfare

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    Seems probable that someone is going to get those 22 networks on the cheap.

    Disney is required to sell them. I'm guessing Comcast will similarly not be permitted to have the channels since they already have their own sports channels. So that leaves the new Fox, which I don't think wants them (or else why would they be selling them?) and then just smaller players...

    Unless maybe a big player who isn't in TV wants to move in on this? Someone from FAANG or Microsoft? Maybe AT&T or Verizon (or does Verizon already own their own sports networks?)
     
  14. Marshall73 macrumors 68000

    Marshall73

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    #14
    Now Apple can scoop up the Fox Sports networks :)
     
  15. cmwade77 macrumors 65816

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    Honestly, I doubt FOX would even entertain any bid from Comcast at this point unless it was something like double what Disney is offering.

    I don't think Disney was ever interested in the FOX Sports side of things, they likely kept them in the mix so they had some wiggle room like this to make things easier to get approved.
     
  16. oneMadRssn macrumors 601

    oneMadRssn

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    Those are some dusty old rings, it's been a while...
     
  17. cmwade77 macrumors 65816

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    I wouldn't be surprised if the DOJ says they are not an acceptable buyer due to their ties to Disney.
    --- Post Merged, Jun 27, 2018 ---
    Not really, we already know Disney wants to do their own streaming service, this deal with FOX just makes it more likely that it will just end up being Hulu and is actually a win for everyone but the cable companies.
     
  18. macduke macrumors G4

    macduke

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    #18
    I hate monopolies but I'm pretty stoked about the MCU coming back together. I'm not even sure if this qualifies as a monopoly as entertainment is a bit different. At least Sony was smart enough to let them use Spiderman and share characters. I'd prefer Disney to own that too but whatever. I'm curious whether Disney will recast most, if not all of the X-Men characters.
     
  19. eagle33199 macrumors member

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    #19
    Interesting news... but what is there about it that relates to Apple in any way? How is this a MacRumor?
     
  20. bigjohn macrumors 6502

    bigjohn

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    #20
    New FOX is a player. The FOX RSN that I work for has revenues of $1.2 billion per year. That's hard cash.

    YouTube TV has it's own channel for LAFC, they might want a linear foothold, but it seems contrary to their current model. Same for Facebook, Amazon, Apple or Netflix.

    Microsoft has been trying to get out of MSNBC, not sure it's a space they want to play in.

    AT&T is a player, they offer internet/tv service in many markets that have RSNs and they don't have enough (3+) where adding a few more would make it noteworthy for the Justice Dept.

    Verizon/Frontier doesn't have any sports networks. as of now.

    It'll be interesting for sure.
     
  21. C DM macrumors Sandy Bridge

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    #21
    Perhaps because Apple is in the content space as well?
     
  22. BlueParadox macrumors 6502

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    #22
    Probably because Apple is getting into the online streaming media business as is Disney, with the latter owning a massive movie and TV catalogue, as well as the prospect of a huge amount of new material :rolleyes:
     
  23. robbysibrahim macrumors regular

    robbysibrahim

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    Apple is a content company now.
     
  24. trtmn macrumors newbie

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  25. campyguy macrumors 68040

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    #25
    Agreed, but it's pretty bling. I miss the Steinbrenner days, got to see Thurman Munson's last game - I still have my memories. FWIW, I do root for the Sox. Good baseball is great baseball! Except for the Dodgers... Cheers, and not Bronx Cheers!
     

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29 June 27, 2018