Disney can still play hardball with Comcast on Sky

Disney can still play hardball with Comcast on Sky

Comcast said it has increased its marketing for internet-only subscribers, since internet has higher profit margins than cable, which are diminished by TV programming costs. "These excellent second quarter results underscore all of this".

The price of owning a piece of Twenty-First Century Fox was too high for Comcast shareholders to swallow, according to the company's CEO Brian Roberts. Since then, the stock has drifted upward again to about $35 but remains well below its earlier peak.

Darroch said Sky's content in sport, drama and entertainment would be bolstered by new partnerships with Netflix, BT Sport, Mediaset Premium and Spotify.

"In the case of Fox, it was a unique opportunity". The Walt Disney Co. had topped that offer with $71 billion as part of a bidding war. "We're also looking at a range of acquisitions, on the whole, at the moment, they tend to be fill-in acquisitions, but I think over time, potentially bigger things so we're not taking our foot off the gas", he said.

Comcast will instead focus on its recommended cash offer for Sky of 14.75 pounds per share.

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Sky, which is already 39 percent owned by Fox, reported a 11 percent rise in core earnings for its established business to 2.5 billion pounds ($3.3 billion) for the year to June 30. The wireless service launched a year ago and is available only to Comcast internet subscribers.

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It added 270,000 new customers in the United Kingdom and Ireland over the year, including 20,000 in the fourth quarter. That made it Comcast's best second quarter for broadband gains in a decade.

Comcast Corp on Thursday reported a quarterly profit that beat Wall Street estimates as it added more high-speed internet customers, part of a push to diversify away from the shrinking US pay-TV market. NBCUniversal's performance was highlighted by continued momentum in affiliate revenue at our cable networks business, and Telemundo presented its first ever FIFA World Cup which set multiple records for the network. That will serve as a deterrent to Disney, even if it is loath to lose out on the access to European markets that Sky promises, particularly to a direct rival like Comcast.

The biggest USA cable provider also shed 140,000 video customers during the second quarter, up from 34,000 customers lost the same time previous year, as TV viewers move to a growing number of cheaper streaming options, such as AT&T's newly-launched WatchTV at $15. As a result, the MSO's video revenues slipped 1.6% to about $5.6 billion. But even here they see a silver lining, arguing that increased streaming relies on greater broadband use. "All those are great trends for us".

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