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Rupert Murdoch considering merging Fox, News Corp. By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Tennis – US Open – Men’s Final – New York, USA – Sep 10, 2017 – Rupert Murdoch, Fox News Chairman standing in front of Spain’s Rafael Nadal against Kevin Anderson of South Africa. Photograph: Mike Cigar/Reuters

Written by Yuvraj Malik and Don Shmielewski

(Reuters) – Rupert Murdoch has begun a process that could unite his media empire, News Corp (NASDAQ) and Fox Corp reported Friday, saying they would consider a merger at his behest, after nearly a decade of splitting between the two companies.

They both said they had set up special committees to review proposals for a potential lineup.

If a deal goes through, the merger would allow Murdoch more control over his media assets and help companies cut costs. Media companies have been struggling with decades of low growth in ad sales and user attention on social media and content sites.

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After years of expanding globally, Murdoch split his empire in 2013, putting the printing business into a new public entity, News Corp, and television and entertainment under 21st Century Fox.

Murdoch said at the time that his massive media holdings had become “increasingly complex,” and that the new structure would streamline operations. The split also protected Fox’s entertainment assets from any potential financial fallout from a phone hacking scandal involving News of the World, which is now no longer based in the United Kingdom.

The thinking at the time was that segregation of companies would eventually generate shareholder value, according to a person familiar with the decision-making process. This vision came true when Fox sold the bulk of its film and television assets to Walt Disney (NYSE:Co for $71 billion in 2019).

The sale left Fox focusing on live events like news and sports, rather than “disrupted” written entertainment content on streaming platforms, Wall Street analysts noted at the time.

However, the main streaming services began to break through the protective trench. Apple Inc (NASDAQ:) and Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ), two tech giants with deep financial resources, have begun bidding for exercise, securing broadcast rights for major league baseball, soccer and soccer.

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Fox recently renewed a long-term deal with the National Football League to continue broadcasting Sunday noon games, but ditched Thursday Football on Amazon.

The person familiar with the proposal said a reunification of Fox and News Corp would give the combined companies greater scope to compete, and complement their assets. The combined companies will generate revenues of about $24 billion.

Murdoch, 91, currently owns semi-controlling stakes in both companies. His son Lachlan Murdoch is the Chairman and CEO of Fox Corp. Firms adopting such arrangements make subsequent mergers subject to approval by a majority of shareholders not affiliated with the controlling shareholder, although it is not clear whether this is the case in this case.

As of the market close on Friday, News Corp’s market capitalization was $9.31 billion, and Fox Corp’s was $16.84 billion, according to Refinitiv. News Corp shares rose 5 percent and Fox shares rose nearly 1 percent in after-market trading.

This development was first reported by the Wall Street Journal earlier today.

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Carvana, Amazon’s used-car hub, is falling apart

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Carvana, the used-car Amazon, is having one of its worst days on Wall Street on Wednesday.

Shares of Carvana fell more than 36% to $4.27 as doubts mounted over the company’s ability to meet payment deadlines.

The numbers are shocking: the stock has lost 45% since the beginning of December. November was a rough one as Carvana shares fell 43%. The stock, which ended 2021 at $231.79, is now down 98% since January.

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The market cap is now $760 million. In short, the comparative market capitalization, if shares outstanding were the same in both periods, would have been $41.45 billion on December 31, 2021.



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Citigroup CEO expects trading revenue to rise 10% in fourth quarter, but investment banking slips by Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The Citibank logo is seen on the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in Manhattan, New York City, US, August 3, 2021. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly/File Photo

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Citigroup Chief Executive Jane Fraser said on Wednesday that revenue in its trading division will rise 10 percent in the current quarter from a year earlier, but investment banking fees will fall 60 percent, in line with industry.

The trading desks have been a surprising bright spot for some of the largest US banks this year as clients reorganized their portfolios across asset classes in response to the cooling markets.

“We’re hoping for a 10% (increase) in the markets based on what we saw in October and November,” Fraser told the Goldman Sachs (NYSE) Financial Services Conference.

But Wall Street investment bankers who were steeped in deals in 2021 have seen activity dip as volatility in capital markets, geopolitical tensions and risk sentiment dampen appetite for deals.

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As stock market listings fade and companies tighten the brakes on deal-making, investment banking revenues have fallen sharply across the industry. The tough operating environment has also led to job cuts at major lenders, with executives warning of more pain ahead.

Separately, in line with previously announced plans to streamline the global banking giant, Fraser said Citi is moving ahead with divestments, exiting the retail banking business in non-core international markets.

“From a strategic perspective, I think we’re all pleased with the progress and how we’re starting to see some initial results materialize in the data,” added Fraser.

Citi is in advanced talks with suitors looking to buy Mexican retail bank Banamex, according to media reports earlier this week. Citi said in January it was looking for a buyer for the unit.

Citigroup (NYSE:) The $12.5 billion acquisition of Banamex in 2001 was the largest ever in Mexico at the time.

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Royal Caribbean mistake causes huge passenger problem

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When people book a vacation, they make those plans months, sometimes years, in advance. This is because, in most cases, going on a trip, especially one that not only involves your family, but maybe even family and friends, there are a lot of moving pieces.

You have to find a time in the calendar that matches when adults can be off work and kids out of school. This can be difficult and often requires people to take time off from their employers, move other things, or arrange child or elderly care for children who are not making the trip.



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