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Posts Tagged ‘Guy Vidra’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Sky Deutschland Slows Takeover | Vidra Named CEO of TNR

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Sky Deutschland: BSkyB Takeover Offer Too Low (THR)
BSkyB’s plans to build a European pay-TV empire hit some opposition on Wednesday. The supervisory and executive boards of 21st Century Fox-controlled German pay TV operator Sky Deutschland advised minority investors not to accept a multi-billion dollar takeover offer from BSkyB. NYT / DealBook The move comes after BSkyB, which is 39 percent owned by 21st Century Fox, agreed in July to acquire the 57 percent of Sky Deutschland that is owned by 21st Century Fox, for £2.9 billion, or $4.7 billion. As part of the deal, BSkyB, one of Europe’s largest pay-television providers, also offered to buy the shares of Sky Deutschland’s minority shareholders for €6.75, or $8.75, each, a small premium on the company’s current share price. Reuters But with only a small premium on the table, analysts have doubted that many will sell. Sky Deutschland would thus retain its stock market listing and BSkyB has not indicated any desire to squeeze out minority shareholders above and beyond the offer which it has set out. Management of the German company, advised by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, on Wednesday argued the offer fell short of its true value. WSJ On issuing its recommendation to minority holders on Wednesday, Sky Deutschland said its chief executive Brian Sullivan, the only executive board member holding shares, wouldn’t participate in the offer, which runs until Oct. 15. Two supervisory board members holding shares also don’t intend to accept the offer, the company said in a statement. Financial Times BSkyB has argued that it can implement its vision for Sky Europe, regardless of how many minorities tender their shares. Buying all minorities’ shares — 43 percent of the company — would cost the U.K. operator £2.1 billion, further increasing its leverage. The company raised £3.25 billion this month to help finance the acquisition of 21st Century Fox’s stakes in Sky Deutschland and Sky Italia. BSkyB said it welcomed Sky Deutschland’s “supportive comments on the strategic rationale for the transaction.” BSkyB shareholders are due to vote on the European deal on Oct. 6.

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Guy Vidra Named CEO of The New Republic

TNR logo GThe New Republic has named Guy Vidra its chief executive officer. Vidra most recently served as general manager of Yahoo News, a role he held since 2012. He previously served as WaPo’s head of business development and emerging media.

“One thing I’ve learned over the past two years is that to preserve and strengthen great institutions, you have to change them,” said Chris Hughes, TNR’s owner, in a statement. “Guy is a highly respected innovator with deep experience who will build on our recent progress in redefining The New Republic for a new time.”

In related news, TNR announced an investment division, The New RepublicFund. The investment arm will “back early-stage technology companies predominantly in the digital media, analytics, and video spaces,” according to TNR.

Vidra begins October 13.

Virginia Heffernan Joins Yahoo! News as National Correspondent

Yahoo! News continues to expand its journalism team. Virginia Heffernan joins as a national correspondent covering culture and politics from a digital perspective. She will also explore how our daily lives and decisions are shaped by emerging technology and behavior.

“We could not be more excited about Virginia joining the growing Yahoo! News team,” said Hillary Frey, managing editor. “Lots of us here are long-time admirers of her writing—from her earlier TV writing at Slate, to her work at The New York Times and beyond— so bringing her on is truly a thrill. No one understands the intersection of politics, video, technology and culture the way Virginia does.”

Prior to joining Yahoo!, Virginia wrote op-ed columns on digital culture for The New York Times. Prior to that, she wrote “The Medium,” a weekly column about Internet culture, for The New York Times Magazine.

“It’s a fascinating time in news, and Yahoo! is out front, leading the shrewdest, most inventive developments in digital media,” said Heffernan. “The company has hands-down the most intelligent concept of what news ought to mean now, online and everywhere. It’s a huge privilege to be working with such a talented team and I can’t wait to get started.”

She will be based in the New York City offices, reporting to Frey.

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