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Sky higher on report Fox preparing new £25bn bid to top Comcast’s offer for the satellite broadcaster

The Financial Times said Fox’s new offer is expected to be at a premium to Comcast’s most recent bid of 1,250p a share, well above its 1,075p a share initial bid made in December 2016
Sky box
With Sky’s current share price at 1,490.5p, up 1.5% on Monday’s close, the UK firm's shareholders are betting that more even bids could be forthcoming

Sky PLC (LON:SKY) shares rose on Tuesday after the Financial Times reported that Twenty-First Century Fox Inc (NASDAQ:FOX) is preparing to make a new £25bn bid to top the offer the satellite broadcaster has received from Comcast Corp. (NASDAQ:CMCSA).

The newspaper said Fox’s offer for Sky is expected to be at a premium to Comcast’s most recent bid of 1,250p per share.

READ: UK government approves Fox's takeover of Sky as long as it agrees to sell off Sky News

The US company could make the new offer as soon as this week, the FT added, if its earlier bid for Sky is formally approved by the UK government.

With Sky’s current share price at 1,490.5p, up 1.5% on Monday’s close, shareholders are betting that more even bids could be forthcoming.

Rupert Murdoch’s Fox initially launched a 1,075p per share, around £19bn bid to buy up all of Sky in December 2016, with the takeover then embroiled in a UK takeover probe until this June when the UK government approved the deal as long as Sky News is sold off to a “suitable third party”..

Sky pulled its recommendation for Fox’s offer to buy the 61% stake it does not already own in the broadcaster after Comcast swooped in with its improved £22bn bid in April.

Fox bid situation

Aside from the Sky bid, Comcast - which owns CNBC, NBC Universal and Universal Pictures – is also battling with The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) for a swathe of assets from Fox itself.

Last month Disney launched a US$71.3bn offer for the assets, which include the Twentieth Century Fox film and TV studio as well as the US cable networks and regional sports channels, trumping a US$65bn deal tabled by Comcst earlier in June.

Not up for sale are Fox News, Fox Sports 1, the Fox broadcast network or its television stations, which - irrespective of who eventually wins – will be spun off into a new company, for the moment, dubbed New Fox.

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