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Posts Tagged ‘21st Century Fox’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Time Warner Plays Defense | Netflix Hits 50 Million Subscribers

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Time Warner Cancels Shareholders’ Ability to Call Special Board Meeting, Guards Against Fox Acquisition (NYT / DealBook)
Time Warner is playing defense. On Monday, the company amended its corporate bylaws and removed a provision that allowed shareholders to call a special board meeting. In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Time Warner said the change was effective immediately. Variety The media company’s board approved a measure to temporarily prevent a fraction of shareholders, some 15 percent, from forcing a vote on 21st Century Fox’s $85 per-share offer, according to public filings. The so-called special meeting provision may be re-instated at the company’s 2015 shareholders meeting. Deadline Hollywood The fear was that Rupert Murdoch — or anyone — could have tried to stampede short-term investors into accepting a deal even if the board concluded that it would not serve their long-term interests. Time Warner shares were down 1.6 percent in post-market trading following disclosure of the change. THR Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox has bid about $80 billion to acquire Time Warner, but Time Warner’s board and CEO Jeffrey Bewkes have rejected the proposal. Some analysts predict that 21st Century Fox will eventually offer $100 a share for Time Warner. The conglomerate’s stock has climbed 23 percent in the past week on such speculation, and Monday it closed at $87.36. TVNewser People familiar with the original $80 billion proposal that was rejected said if 21st Century Fox took over Time Warner, it would sell CNN to prevent antitrust issues stemming from Fox News and CNN’s direct competitor relationship.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Forbes Sells Majority Stake | Kindle Unlimited Unveiled

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Forbes Media Sells Majority Stake to Hong Kong Investor Group (FishbowlNY)
In the past six years, Forbes has expanded its international publishing reach from nine licensed local editions to 36. Content is now consumed in 63 countries, in 21 different languages. Friday, the company solidified its international reach with the announcement that a majority stake has been sold to a group of Asian investors. NYT / DealBook The terms were not disclosed, but the transaction values Forbes Media at $475 million, said a person close to the deal. Forbes’ new controlling shareholders will be Integrated Whale Media Investments, a group that includes the Hong Kong investor Tak Cheung Yam and Wayne Hsieh, the Singaporean co-founder of AsusTek Computer. Forbes The Forbes family will retain a significant ownership stake, will stay actively involved in Forbes Media and will work with the investor group to further increase market share of the existing Forbes Media product lines in media, digital, technology, as well as brand extensions. Upon closing, Elevation Partners will fully exit its investment in Forbes Media. Mashable In a statement, the family and its new majority owners framed the deal as a way to ensure Forbes‘ brand and journalistic operations continue to expand. “Our partners respect our brand and values, and support our longstanding mission of championing entrepreneurship and free market capitalism through quality, independent business journalism,” Steve Forbes said in a statement. Capital New York Forbes Media will remain headquartered in the U.S., and there will be no change at the top — Steve Forbes will continue as chairman and editor-in-chief, and Mike Perlis will remain CEO. The company reported that it made a profit in 2013; the company projected a revenue of $144.6 million for the year, according to a report.

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Rupert Murdoch Tried to Buy Time Warner

Rupert-Murdoch-10-7Rupert Murdoch wants to own all the media. All of it. According to The New York Times, Murdoch and his entertainment company — 21st Century Fox — attempted to buy Time Warner for $80 billion, but the offer was rejected.

As part of the offer, 21st Century Fox said it would sell CNN to alleviate any antitrust concerns that arose because Fox News competes with CNN.

21st Century Fox released the following statement regarding the failed takeover bid: “21st Century Fox can confirm that we made a formal proposal to Time Warner last month to combine the two companies. The Time Warner Board of Directors declined to pursue our proposal. We are not currently in any discussions with Time Warner.”

Don’t take that to mean this is over with. In fact, it’s probably just beginning. Don’t forget, this comes only a week after word leaked that News Corp might try to buy Tribune Newspapers.

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Chase Carey Extends Contract with 21st Century Fox

Chase Carey GChase Carey is going to be the president and COO of 21st Century Fox through at least 2016. The Wall Street Journal reports that Carey has agreed to a two-year contract extension mere weeks before his original one ended.

Carey’s contract was set to expire June 30, and — according to the Journal — that ”had attracted some attention and speculation on Wall Street.” Well, we guess the rumors have officially been squashed.

Carey, who has held the roles of president and COO since 2009, won’t see much of a pay bump over the course of his new deal. Not that he really needs it. Last year Carey’s total compensation was $27 million. Not bad. Not bad at all.

Morning Media Newsfeed: Time Inc. Struggles | Netflix Shareholders Back Hastings

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Time Inc. Stock Falls in Its Debut (NYT)
Shares of Time Inc., the magazine company that began trading Monday after being spun off from Time Warner, got off to a rough start, falling nearly 7 percent before recovering somewhat. Bloomberg The shares, trading under the ticker symbol TIME, slid less than 1 percent to $23.30 at the close in New York, after earlier dropping by as much as 6.7 percent. Shares of Time Warner, which owns the Warner Bros. movie studio and cable networks such as HBO and CNN, rose 1.2 percent to $68.99. FishbowlNY Last week, Time Inc.’s execs met with editors and asked them to begin the process of cutting 25 percent of editorial spending. That means staffing cuts are coming by the bunches. HuffPost Time Inc. laid off hundreds of employees in 2013 and earlier this year. Some titles, such as People, appear to have already started with their layoffs. Time Inc. is also set to leave its longstanding home, the Time-Life Building, for a cheaper downtown pad. THR Dealmaking could be on the agenda, but unlikely in the form of big acquisitions. Time Inc. was spun off with $1.3 billion in debt. Analysts have compared that to the lack of debt that Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp got when the mogul’s empire was split into two last year. Moody’s recently rated Time Inc.’s debt below investment grade, but other observers said the debt will also allow Time Inc. to show that it can be trusted financially.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Walters Signs Off | Abramson/NYT Fight Unfolds | FCC Approves Proposal

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Two Dozen Women of TV News, Barbara Walters’ Legacy, Join Her on Her Final View (TVNewser)
Thursday afternoon, the legacy of Barbara Walters came to life in the finale of her final The View, taped at ABC’s Westside studios and set to air Friday. Mediaite All 11 current and former co-hosts of The View turned up to send off Walters. In an emotional segment, the hosts shared their fondest memories of the program’s founding member and some of the advice that they said guides them in their present careers. THR / The Live Feed Oprah Winfrey and Hillary Clinton were among the surprise guests who showed up to say goodbye. After more than 50 years in TV news, Walters is officially retiring, leaving her co-hosting gig on The View, but she’ll continue to serve as the show’s executive producer and contribute to ABC News on an as-needed basis. The Associated Press Walters brought the hour to a close with a heartfelt statement looking back with amazement on her career, then signing off with a pledge to “take a deep breath and enjoy my View.” But a more telling moment took place during a break, as the throng of women she had paved the way for posed with her for a group portrait. TheWrap The cadre of A-List media stars who gathered for the photo included Winfrey, Katie Couric, Joan Lunden, Robin Roberts, Connie Chung, Gayle King, Maria Shriver, Paula Zahn, Jane Pauley, Savannah Guthrie, Elizabeth Vargas, Lara Spencer, Tamron Hall, Diane Sawyer, Cynthia McFadden, Natalie Morales, JuJu Chang, Amy Robach, Deborah Norville and Hoda Kotb, as well as Walters’ co-hosts, Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar, Rosie O’Donnell, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Debbie Matenopoulos, Lisa Ling, Star Jones, Jenny McCarthy and Meredith Vieira.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: NBC Secures Olympics | AOL Earnings Fall Flat | Horowitz to Today

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NBC Secures Olympics Through 2032 (TVSpy)
NBCUniversal has acquired the rights to the Olympic Games through 2032. The new deal, valued at $7.65 billion, is the longest U.S. Olympic sports rights agreement in history. TVNewser NBC adds to the three Olympics it secured in an earlier deal: 2016 in Rio, 2018 in Pyeongchang and 2020 in Tokyo, with six more Summer and Winter Olympics through 2032, the host cities of which have not yet been selected. Adweek The deal comes as a major surprise on the week before the broadcast upfront presentations, as rival media outlets appeared to have been altogether unaware that negotiations were in the works. In fact, several sources confirmed that no other networks were so much as invited to bid for the package. This was by design, said IOC president Thomas Bach. Reuters The IOC did not approach ESPN, a network spokesman said, and neither were Fox nor CBS. The agreement includes media rights across broadcast television, cable TV, Internet and mobile platforms. NBC and rival networks have been stocking up on live sports content, which are popular with advertisers because large audiences watch in real-time and do not skip the TV commercials. Mashable NBC has become a player in the live sports industry in recent years, signing deals for the U.S. rights to the English Premier League, the National Hockey League and Sunday night NFL games. The Olympics are an expensive property, but NBC claims that it has been able to turn a profit on them. The price tag for the most recent deal is $1.4 billion more than the previous one.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Murdoch Ups Sons | Twitter Ban Overturned | NYT Adds Digital Subs

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Rupert Murdoch Elevates Eldest Son to Be His News Corp. Co-Chairman (The Guardian / Greenslade Blog)
Rupert Murdoch’s eldest son, Lachlan, has been promoted to the role of non-executive co-chairman on the News Corp. board. It means that the two will work alongside each other. Rupert, the executive chairman, described the appointment as “recognition of Lachlan’s entrepreneurial leadership and passion for news, digital media and sport.” TVNewser Lachlan has been named non-executive chairman at both News Corp. and 21st Century Fox. The 42-year-old has been a director of both companies, but effectively left the media empire in 2005 where he had been deputy chief operating officer directly responsible for News Corp.’s U.S. television stations group and publishing assets. After Lachlan left News Corp., Roger Ailes, the co-founder and chairman of Fox News Channel, was named chairman of News Corp.’s (now 21st Century Fox’s) television stations group. FishbowlNY The promotion means that Lachlan is all but guaranteed to take over News Corp. when Rupert steps down. In the past, it was believed that James Murdoch was the heir apparent, but no more. James was promoted as well — to co-chief operating officer at 21st Century Fox. Financial Times James’ elevation comes two years after he was embroiled in the U.K. phone hacking scandal as the former head of News Corp.’s U.K. newspaper business. His new position gives him a more central executive role at one of America’s most global media companies, in contrast to Lachlan’s non-executive position, keeping him in contention in a succession race that has seen numerous twists. James will share his new title with Chase Carey, a trusted adviser and second-in-command to Rupert, to whom he had reported in his previous role as deputy chief operating officer. Reuters Each son has at various times been seen as heir apparent, and it is unclear how well they will work together when Murdoch finally hands over the companies. The Murdoch family controls both Fox and News Corp. through a trust that has a 38 percent ownership stake of Class B shares with voting rights. A source familiar with the companies said that the plan to elevate Lachlan and James had been in the works for a while and that a tussle over control would be unlikely.

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James Murdoch Sells 18 Percent of Stake in 21st Century Fox

James MurdochJames Murdoch, deputy chief operating officer of 21st Century Fox, has sold about 18.5 percent of his stake in the company. The Wall Street Journal reports that the transaction was valued at $15 million. The sale was for 455,000 Class A shares, at an average of $32.97 per share.

News of the sale is interesting, if only because it comes about two weeks after 21st Century Fox reported first-quarter profits plummeted by 44 percent. However, a spokesperson for 21st Century Fox said young Murdoch sold the stake for “financial planning purposes.”

Feel free to interpret that however you want.

Rupert Murdoch Isn’t Going Anywhere

RupertMurdoch_FeaturedSome people won’t like it, but Rupert Murdoch is here to stay. Reuters reports that Murdoch has been re-elected as chairman of 21st Century Fox, despite the latest round of protests from shareholders.

The opposition to Murdoch was led by Christian Brothers Investment Services and Investment Management Corporation in Canada. They recommended that 21st Century Fox have an independent chair because of “the level of family control, and the influence this may bring to the impending reorganization.”

“Our new company deserves a fresh start” said Timothy Schaler, an adviser for Christian Brothers, at a shareholder meeting. “For the board to ignore such a mandate shows disregard for corporate governance.”

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