News Limited in takeover bid on Consolidated Media

Rupert Murdoch-controlled News Limited has made a surprise takeover $2B bid for Consolidated Media Holdings, a major stakeholder of Foxtel and FOX Sports.

James Packer, who owns the ConsMedia stake through his Consolidated Press Holdings (CPH), said today: “CPH welcomes News’ proposal and looks forward to [ConsMedia] and News working together to address the detailed terms and conditions”.

If successful, the move see News Limited lift its ownership to 50% of Foxtel and 100% of FOX Sports, but would first fall under the scrutiny of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission and the Foreign Investment Review Board.

By selling its Pay TV holdings, James Packer would all but exit Australia’s media market, leaving him with just a 6.9 per cent stake in TEN.

Meanwhile former Foxtel chief executive Kim Williams, who has been CEO at News Limited since December, is due to announce major reform for the company’s print newspapers this afternoon.

Foxtel is 50% controlled by Telstra, 25% by News Limited and 25% by Consolidated Media Holdings.

Source: The Age, The Australian

4 Comments:

  1. From a business perspective, it’s a brilliant idea as it increases News Corps Australian footprint and largely increases their Australian division’s profits. However, from an Australian consumer standpoint, it sucks to have one less big Australian company owned by Australians. Consolidated Media Holdings is owned largely by Consolidated Press (Packer) and Seven West Network – two of the biggest names in Australian media. But no matter the end result, Australia will still be offered brilliant pay-TV and sports channels as both Consolidated Media and News Corp know how to succeed in media. The one thing I can’t stop thinking about though is would that mean that Fox International Channels would take over Premier Media Group (seems though it operates FOX Sports and SPEED in every other market where News Corp is the owner)?

  2. News Limited went trough major cost cutting last year just before Kim Williams started, now with the Newspaper reforms this afternoon..

    I’m surprised they even have the resources for this bid. This must be coming directly from the top of NewsCorp

  3. I so hope the ACCC doesn’t allow this..Murdoch now knows trying to increase his stake in Sky in the UK is not very good( at least for a few years when the public may forget).

  4. If the ACCC lets this go through after what we’ve learned about the Murdoch’s in Britain and the US recently then we’ll all know that the same thing is going on here.

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