Comcast drops out of bidding war with Disney over Fox

Comcast drops out of bidding war with Disney over Fox

Comcast has dropped its efforts to buy much of 21st Century Fox, ending a bidding war with The Walt Disney Company over the company’s entertainment assets.

In a statement on Thursday, Comcast said it would instead focus on acquiring Sky, a European pay-TV provider that Fox is also pursuing. Comcast has offered $34 billion for the London-based Sky.

“I’d like to congratulate Bob Iger and the team at Disney and commend the Murdoch family and Fox for creating such a desirable and respected company," Comcast CEO Brian Roberts said in a statement.

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The move will likely clear the way for Disney’s $71 billion bid for Fox’s entertainment empire, which includes movie franchises like “X-Men” as well as television networks like FX. Comcast had offered $65 billion.

Disney's offer had several advantages over Comcast’s bid, one of which was that the Justice Department had already approved it.

Fox’s shareholders will vote on the Disney offer later this month.