Disney has agreed to acquire Fox's studio and television production assets for $52.4 billion, according to a press release. 21st Century Fox shareholders will receive 0.2745 Disney shares for each 21st Century Fox share they own.
The package that Disney is buying reportedly includes Fox's A&E and Star TV networks, as well as its regional sports operation, movie studios, and stakes in Sky and Hulu, among other assets. The deal will leave Fox with its news and sports assets.
Disney Chief Executive Officer Bob Iger will remain with his company through 2021 to "provide the vision and proven leadership required to successfully complete and integrate such a massive, complex undertaking," Orin Smith, lead independent director of the Disney Board, said in the press release. There was some speculation Iger could leave Disney to enter the 2020 election.
Walt Disney over the years
Walt Disney over the years
UNSPECIFIED - NOVEMBER 27: Walt Disney's father and mother late 19th century (Photo by Apic/Getty Images)
Actor Leslie Howard and producer Walt Disney shake hands after playing in a polo match together.
(Original Caption) Walt Disney (1901-1966), famed orignator of full-length animated motion pictures, at work at his drawing board.
(Original Caption) Portrait of Walter Elias Disney (1901-1966), originator of the vast Disney empire consisting of theme parks, cartoons, and movies. Disney is waving and smiling for the camera in this 3/4 length photograph.
Walt Disney with kittens.
(Original Caption) 2/1942: Secretary of Treasury Henry Morgenthau, Jr., Walt Disney, Assistant Secretary of Treasury, John L. Sullivan, Assistant to the Secretary George Buffington, Disney Artist Joseph Grant, and Disney writer Richard Huemer look over Disney's sketches for 'The New Spirit,' Disney cartoon for the Treasury Department.
(Original Caption) Walt Disney takes an imaginary spin high on an old Eagle racing bike while his daughter, Diane, paces him on an 1870 model tricycle. The bikes are part of a collection in Ford's Edison Museum. Undated photograph.
(Original Caption) Walter E. Disney, famous producer of animated cartoons, is shown with doll replicas of his most famous characters which were responsible for his being conferred an honorary degree of Bachelor of Arts at Harvard University Commencement. President James Bryant Conant made the presentation before 5,800 special guests, alumni, students, faculty and members of the graduating class.
(Original Caption) Walt Disney, creator of Mickey Mouse, with Louis Lumiere, French Grand old man of films, during the former's visit to Paris.
American film producer and creator of Disney World, Walt Disney, holds sheet music with actor Eddy Nelson.
(Original Caption) 1939-Los Angeles, CA- Shirley Temple presents an Academy Award to Walt Disney for his outstanding cartoon, 'Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,' one big statue and seven little ones, at the 11th Annual Academy of Motion picture Arts & Sciences dinner.
(Original Caption) Arriving on the Rex is Walt Disney, creator of Mickey Mouse. Mickey Mouse is the animated cartoon character who cavorts his way over the silver sheet much to the delight of America's younger generation.
(Original Caption) Walt Disney learns to do El Gato, one of the colorful and traditional dances of the Argentine countryside. During the survey trip which Disney and a group of his artists made to South America, they spent many hours studying and recording through sketches and photography, the ins and outs of numerous dances and costumes.
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The deal announcement comes amid considerable interest for Fox from not just Disney, but also the likes of Comcast and Verizon. The Wall Street Journal and CNBC reported in November that Comcast and Verizon had approached Fox about buying at least part of the company, providing the first signs of a bidding war.
Now that deal terms have been agreed upon, the new entity will have to contend with rating declines across many large cable networks as more consumer opt for cheaper and more customizable web-based services.