Sky: Comcast outbids Fox with £30bn bid for broadcaster

By Mutala Yakubu
Game of Thrones is one of Sky's most popular shows
Game of Thrones is one of Sky's most popular shows

US cable giant Comcast has submitted the highest bid in the auction for broadcaster Sky, valuing the company at more than £30bn.

Comcast beat Rupert Murdoch's Fox in a rare blind auction process set by the UK's Takeover Panel.

The firm's chairman and chief executive said it was "a great day for Comcast".

Sky has recommended its shareholders accept the bid, saying it was an "excellent outcome" and "represents materially superior value".

The UK company's 23m subscribers and Premier League football rights make it one of Europe's most profitable TV companies.

Comcast's bid equated to £17.28 per share, beating Fox's of £15.67 per share.

Fox had looked set to take over the 61% of Sky it does not already own until Comcast topped its bid.

In July, Fox raised its offer to £24.5bn, but this was trumped by a £26bn bid from Comcast.

The process has also been beset by regulatory issues amid concerns over media plurality and the degree of Mr Murdoch's influence over the UK media landscape.

Brian Roberts, chairman and chief executive of Comcast, said: "Sky is a wonderful company with a great platform, tremendous brand, and accomplished management team.

"This acquisition will allow us to quickly, efficiently and meaningfully increase our customer base and expand internationally.

"We now encourage Sky shareholders to accept our offer, which we look forward to completing before the end of October 2018."
Jeremy Darroch, Sky chief executive, said it was the "beginning of the next exciting chapter for Sky".