Rupert Murdoch, executive chairman of 21st Century Fox, said Fox believes Disney's offer is better than Comcast's - but the company said it would consider bids from other companies, including a revised offer from Comcast. The meeting is likely to result in Fox kicking off a process to formally evaluate Comcast's bid, the people said, asking not to be identified as the matter is private.
Fox accepted the sweetened terms, saying it offers "a package of consideration, flexibility and deal certainty enhancements that is superior to the proposal made by the Comcast Corporation".
Disney and Comcast are fighting over the assets as they scramble to build scale to compete with fast-growing digital giants like Netflix Inc. and Amazon Inc. that are reshaping the media landscape.
Although there's been talking that the "most sensible outcome" would be for Disney and Comcast to "split the baby", the former may forego said option, opting to add cash to their initial all-stock offer instead, at least according to the latest from CNBC. Disney committed to giving Fox shareholders Disney shares worth $38, as long as Disney's average stock price remains between $93.53 and $114.32. Comcast's current bid was already poised to load the company up with debt, and its shares have fallen 18 per cent this year. Shares of Disney rose 29 cents to $106.47 and Comcast shares rose 22 cents to $33.03 United States dollars.
The deal would include Fox film and TV studios, some cable networks and worldwide assets, but not Fox News Channel or the Fox television network. That would lift the total transaction value above about $85-billion. Comcast, Disney and Fox each own a 30 percent stake in the business, and whoever wins the bid for Fox would own a majority stake.