Comcast Corp has made an official cash bid for large chunks of 21 Century Fox, valued at around $65 billion.
The figure trumps The Walt Disney Company’s deal that was originally valued at $52.4 billion for the same parts of the conglomerate.
Comcast says its bid is 19 per cent higher than Disney’s, which would have put it at $62.4 billion, though Disney’s bid involved stock.
Analysts had said that Tuesday afternoon’s court decision to allow telecom giant AT&T to acquire Time Warner was making a Fox bid from the cable giant more likely. The bid disclosed on Wednesday is for $35 per share.
It is now expected to ignite a bidding war with Disney, under whose deal Fox must share any superior bid with the studio and give it at least five business days to increase its own offer.
Last December, Comcast had bowed out of the bidding process, clearing the path for Disney’s offer to be accepted by Fox. The purchase was to include the 20 Century Fox movie and TV studio and all the international pay TV properties including its stake in Sky.
Fox has said it will carefully review and consider the Comcast proposal and that it would either postpone or adjourn a July 10 special meeting where stockholders were to discuss the deal with Disney.