updated 09:27 am EDT, Wed July 16, 2014
Move would consolidate Time Warner, 21st Century Fox
Rupert Murdoch and 21st Century Fox have made a bid to buy Time Warner. The deal, said to be worth up to $80 billion, was rejected, but Murdoch is reportedly "determined" to complete the deal -- which would make the combined company a content powerhouse bringing Fox, Fox News, FX, TNT, TBS, HBO, Warner Brothers, and many other studios under one roof.
The discussions were reportedly private between Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes and Murdoch. An offer for $85 per share, plus cash was allegedly made. The deal is offering a premium of $14 per share at today's share price, which is likely to climb today.
Importantly, the deal does not include the seperate Time Warner Cable entity, which has existed as a separate company since 2009 and is embroiled in merger regulatory approval with Comcast. Time Warner itself does hold some stake in Internet sales to consumers, oscillating between fifth and seventh over the last few years with the largest US provider of broadband.
Regulatory issues surrounding the deal may be difficult to deal with. Murdoch has reportedly offered to sell news outlet CNN, as it would also own Fox News after any deal.
"21st Century Fox can confirm that we made a formal proposal to Time Warner last month to combine the two companies. The Time Warner Board of Directors declined to pursue our proposal. We are not currently in any discussions with Time Warner," 21st Century Fox said in a statement when asked about the reports of the tendered deal.