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Walt Disney Finally Closes Its Fox Acquisition


Nov. 20 2020, Updated 11:32 a.m. ET

Disney-Fox acquisition

Yesterday, Walt Disney (DIS) finally closed its long-awaited acquisition of most of 21st Century Fox’s (FOX) (FOXA) media and entertainment assets. The $71.3 billion deal concluded after more than a year of deliberation. Meanwhile, 21st Century Fox (or 21CF) retained some assets and formed a new entity, Fox Corporation. Disney stock fell 0.01% yesterday, while Fox fell 4.26%.

This year, Disney stock has risen 0.31% and Fox has fallen 19.7%. Media stocks Comcast (CMCSA), Netflix (NFLX), CBS (CBS), and News Corporation (NWS) have risen 15.9%, 40.2%, 5.9%, and 10.0%, respectively.

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How Disney won Fox

Disney initially offered $52.4 billion for 21CF’s film and television assets in December 2017 but was suppressed by Comcast’s higher all-cash bid of $65 billion in June 2018.

Though Disney eventually won the battle with Comcast, the deal underwent strict regulatory scrutiny over concerns the merger would reduce competition in the market. To ease US antitrust concerns, Disney agreed to sell 22 of 21CF’s regional sports networks. The 21CF deal received approval from Brazil (EWZ) in February and Mexico on March 11 after Disney agreed to divest Fox Sports in both countries.


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