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Comcast offers $65 billion cash bid for 21st Century Fox

Comcast offers $65 billion cash bid for 21st Century Fox

Comcast is making a $65 billion bid for much of 21st Century Fox’s assets, setting up a potential bidding war with Disney over the company’s entertainment offerings.

Comcast CEO Brian Roberts sent a letter to the Fox board of directors on Wednesday with the offer of $35 per share, 19 percent more than Disney’s bid.

The announcement comes just a day after a federal judge approved a similar deal, AT&T’s $85 billion merger with Time Warner, over the Trump administration's efforts to block it.

“In light of yesterday’s decision in the AT&T/Time Warner case, the limited time prior to your shareholders’ meeting, and our strong continued interest, we are pleased to present a new, all-cash proposal that fully addresses the Board’s stated concerns with our prior proposal,” Roberts wrote in his letter.

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Fox’s board had rejected a bid from Comcast last year in part due to concerns over regulatory approval.

As part of the latest offer, the telecom giant said it would pay Fox $4 billion if the deal doesn’t get approved by regulators.

Fox’s shareholders plan to vote July 10 on the company’s proposed merger with Disney. Roberts said in his letter that a merger with Comcast has just as good of a chance of getting regulatory approval.

"21st Century Fox remains subject to the Disney Merger Agreement," Fox said in a statement. "Consistent with the terms of this agreement and the fiduciary duties of the Company’s directors, 21st Century Fox’s Board, in consultation with its outside legal counsel and financial advisors, will carefully review and consider the Comcast proposal."

The efforts by telecom companies to buy up media companies comes as consumers are increasingly forgoing traditional pay TV subscriptions and as traditional video distribution is being challenged by companies like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon.

After the FCC’s decision to repeal its net neutrality rules, internet providers may also soon be free to prioritize their own entertainment content to subscribers over offerings from competitors.

Updated at 5:41 p.m.