Following weeks of speculation, The Walt Disney Co. this morning announced a deal to acquire the bulk of 21st Century Fox -- including its studios, cable networks and international assets -- in a stock deal valued at $52.4 billion.
Fox Broadcasting Co. -- including the broadcast networks and stations -- and key cable networks, including Fox News Channel, will be spun off into a new publicly traded company for its shareholders.
The deal aligns some of the most powerful entertainment assets in the world under one roof: Disney’s. That includes popular Fox franchises such as Avatar, X-Men, Fantastic Four and Deadpool, as well as numerous other film, TV shows, libraries and digital assets.
Disney also gains key cable network properties, including FX Networks, National Geographic Partners, Fox Sports Regional Networks, Fox Networks Group International, Star India and Fox’s interests in Hulu, Sky plc, Tata Sky and Endemol Shine Group.
The spun-off new Fox will include iconic branded properties like Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, Fox Broadcasting Company, Fox Sports, Fox Television Stations Group and sports cable networks FS1, FS2, Fox Deportes and Big Ten Network (BTN). It will also include the company’s studio lot in Los Angeles and equity investment in Roku.
“We are paving the way for the new Fox, as well as a better Disney,” 21st Century Fox Executive Chairman Rupert Murdoch stated. “They will each continue to be leaders in creating the very best experiences for consumers.”