UPDATE: Rupert Murdoch Calls U.S. Newspaper Acquisition “Unlikely” As New News Corp Plans Unveiled

By | Tuesday May 28, 2013 @ 3:10pm PDT

UPDATE, 3:10 PM: So much for the speculation that the new News Corp — the publishing company that News Corp is about to spin off — will pounce on some papers that Tribune wants to sell, including the Los Angeles Times. Well, at least for now. Rupert Murdoch told investors and analysts today that U.S. rules designed to bar a company from owning a newspaper and TV station in the same market make a newspaper acquisition here “unlikely.” That’s sure to comfort investors who fear that Murdoch will use the new company to make deals that they’ll hate, like his $5B purchase of Dow Jones in 2007. Many investors still believe that newspaper values haven’t hit bottom. But today’s comment leaves room for him to change direction. The FCC is considering changes in media ownership rules that would make it easier to cross-own newspaper and TV properties in a city.

Related: News Corp. Board Approves Separation Of Businesses; OK’s $500M Share Buyback

Murdoch also indicated that he plans to raise The Wall Street Journal’s subscription rates, and could indirectly funnel some cash to investors. He noted that the Journal charges about $44 a month while its rival, The New York Times, charges more than $50. “There’s a dramatic difference in price,” he said adding later that “we’re looking to our readers to pay a heavier load.” What about advertising? “We’re being very realistic” by not forecasting a big increase in spending on print, he said. But execs noted that the new company plans to pay a dividend, and will set aside $500M to repurchase shares if they believe the stock is undervalued. “Ideally we’ll hold on to that money for other forms of expansion,” he says. Read More »

Comments (3)

News Corp. Board Approves Separation Of Businesses; OK’s $500M Share Buyback

By | Friday May 24, 2013 @ 7:15am PDT

New York, NY – May 24, 2013 – News Corporation and the new News Corporation today announced that the separation of News Corporation (the “Company”) into two distinct publicly traded companies, 21st Century Fox and the new News Corporation, has been formally approved by the Company’s Board of Directors. The Company announced appointments to the Boards of Directors of both companies, effective upon the completion of the separation, which is expected to occur on June 28, 2013.

Read More »

Comments (0)

Rupert Murdoch Compares Facebook To “Crappy MySpace” On IPO Anniversary

By | Friday May 17, 2013 @ 1:48pm PDT

Look out Facebook!” the News Corp CEO wrote today in a tweet. “Hours spent participating per member dropping seriously. First really bad sign as seen by crappy MySpace years ago.” Easy to see why he’s still smarting over the “crappy” asset that he bought in 2005 for $508M and sold two years ago for $35M. But his warning also reflects the passion Facebook inspires among supporters and critics alike on the anniversary of its ill-fated initial public offering at $38 a share. The stock closed today at $26.25 — down 31.3% — and has been pretty much flat for more than five months. Bears say that Facebook can’t sustain its torrid growth as it faces potent competitors — including Google, Twitter and Tumblr —  and a shift among users from personal computers to advertising unfriendly small screened mobile phones and tablets. “Facebook is now scrambling to boost revenues through bigger ads that take over the entire screen,” BTIG’s Rich Greenfield notes today. He contrasts that to Google+, a social network that “is not out to harm the user experience through disruptive, annoying, spammy ads, they simply want the data to improve search and other products.” Read More »

Comments (7)

Rupert Murdoch Unveils 21st Century Fox Logo: Video

By | Thursday May 9, 2013 @ 12:47pm PDT

News Corp chief Rupert Murdoch this morning sent this memo to staff everywhere. Again, while the parent company logo changes after the corporation splits, the film and TV studio’s 20th Century Fox name will not:

Dear Colleagues:

Read More »

Comments 41

News Corp Shareholders Will Meet On June 11 To Vote On Company Split

By | Tuesday April 30, 2013 @ 5:51am PDT

UPDATE, 7:32 AM: I misread the Murdoch family voting plan and want to clarify. The group will participate — but only up to 39.4% of the total after factoring out the disqualified ballots from non-U.S. citizens. … Read More »

Comments (0)

Rupert Murdoch’s Direct Pay To Grow 15% After News Corp Splits

By | Friday April 26, 2013 @ 4:00am PDT

He’ll receive a total of at least $28.3M from both entities in the fiscal year that ends June 2014, up from $24.6M planned from News Corp for fiscal 2013, … Read More »

Comments (8)

Rupert Murdoch Defends NY Post Boston Coverage As President Chides Media

By | Saturday April 20, 2013 @ 10:34am PDT

The News Corp. Chairman and CEO today Tweeted a defense of the New York Post’s controversial Thursday front-pager blasting two innocent men as “Bag Men” sought … Read More »

Comments 20

No Name Change For 20th Century Fox

UPDATE: Forget that News Corp is renaming its new separate media and entertainment business 21st Century Fox to take it into the future. 20th Century Fox is sticking to its past. ”The film Read More »

Comments 26

21st Century Fox Is Rupert’s Renamed Showbiz Giant “To Take Us Into Future”

By | Tuesday April 16, 2013 @ 1:47pm PDT

UPDATE: No Name Change For 20th Century Fox

BREAKING… 21st Century Fox replaces the previously announced name Fox Group for the independent media and entertainment company. The publishing side will retain the name News Corp when the Big Media corporation splits off its two main businesses. The new name will be effective with the separation and “draws on the Company’s creative heritage, while also speaking to the future as well as the innovation that defines its portfolio of businesses,” according to today’s press release. (I hear Rupert Murdoch‘s giant actually hired a naming company for this rather obvious choice unofficially pictured here.) Under the 21st Century Fox umbrella will be a global portfolio of cable and broadcasting networks and properties, including FOX, FX, FXX, FS1, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, Fox Sports, Fox Sports Network, National Geographic Channels, Fox Pan American Sports, MundoFox and STAR; film studio Twentieth Century Fox Film; and television production studios Twentieth Century Fox Television and Shine Group as well as its pay-television services in Europe and Asia, including Sky Deutschland, Sky Italia and its equity interests in BSkyB and Tata Sky. On June 28, 2012, News Corp announced the separation of its businesses into two separate independent companies, with the other containing newspapers, information services, and integrated marketing services, digital real estate services, book publishing, digital education and sports programming and pay-TV distribution in Australia. The split still needs federal regulatory approval. Here is Murdoch’s memo to all employees about the new name announcement: Read More »

Comments 28

Global Showbiz Briefs: Rupert Murdoch On Thatcher Death; ‘Power Games’ Mini Castings & More

By | Wednesday April 10, 2013 @ 9:00pm PDT

Rupert Murdoch Credits Inspiration Of Margaret Thatcher
The death of Margaret Thatcher has stirred intense reaction in the UK this week. The former British Prime Minister was a polarizing figure, but Rupert Murdoch has made no secret of his respect for her. Last year around this time, he told the Leveson Inquiry into UK media ethics that he remained “a great admirer.” Today, he penned a tribute in his London Times newspaper crediting her with being “an inspiration in my business life.” Murdoch had meetings with Thatcher around the time that he was bidding to acquire Times Newspapers, but has said he never asked her for any favors. Thatcher was famous for her stance against the unions during the 1979 strikes in Britain. Murdoch in his tribute called her “a risk-taker” who inspired his own position in the newspaper strikes of 1986, “the first major strike in private industry that had been won by the owners since the war.” Without that win, Murdoch writes, “We would not have the vigorous competitive press that is a feature of modern Britain. It was the same in the television industry. We took huge risks in creating satellite television which many critics derided as the end of civilization, but as a result, we created thousands of jobs and viewers now enjoy far greater choice.” In conclusion, Murdoch wrote, “Thanks to her I have experienced in Britain many of my defining moments as a businessman.” Read More »

Comments (3)

Rupert Murdoch Bullish On Jeff Zucker As CNN Chief

By | Friday March 8, 2013 @ 11:50am PST

With Fox News Channel still topping the cable news universe, Rupert Murdoch is feeling magnanimous about the competition. In an interview with WSJ Live, the News Corp chief said he thinks new CNN Worldwide President … Read More »

Comments (1)

Four Admit Selling Info To Rupert Murdoch’s Sun While His Times Nabs Paper Of The Year

Former Rupert Murdoch lieutenant Rebekah Brooks and former News Of The World editor Andy Coulson appeared in a London court today on charges of allegedly conspiring to bribe public officials. While both of … Read More »

Comments (0)

Oz Analysts Mostly Bullish On New News Corp., Local CEO To Face Fresh Challenges

By | Thursday February 28, 2013 @ 3:33am PST

Don Groves is a Deadline contributor based in Sydney

Rupert Murdoch’s Australian empire will generate as much of 60% of the annual earnings of the publishing arm of News Corp. after the company splits this year, say Sydney-based analysts who are generally sanguine about the new News Corporation’s prospects. The Oz group has largely gone under the radar of international investors until now because its financial results were not disclosed. With that set to change after the split, Kim Williams, CEO of Australian division News Limited, will face increased pressure and scrutiny from the get-go.

ComSec’s Alice Bennett expects News Corporation stock to be sold off aggressively at the start, creating one of the initial challenges for Williams. Bennett believes the sale will be down to factors that include News Corp.’s exposure to the Australian and New Zealand economies; the fact that publishing reps 53% of earnings; ongoing losses at the Amplify education business and the risk of further litigation in the UK. But, she does allow, “When the dust settles post demerger, we think this vehicle could provide some interesting opportunities for Australian investors given the highly cash-generative pay TV assets and higher-growth online assets.” Fox Sports and Foxtel, of which News Corp. holds 50%, are staying in the publishing fold. The company also owns 61% of realestate.com.au. Read More »

Comments (0)

Rupert Murdoch Sells $40.1M In News Stock

By | Friday February 15, 2013 @ 10:05pm PST

Rupert Murdoch this week sold voting shares in News Corp worth about $40.1 million, according to an SEC filing reported today by the company’s Wall Street Journal. The sale … Read More »

Comments (0)

News Corp Shares Hit Another All-Time High

By | Wednesday January 30, 2013 @ 1:54pm PST

I could have run the same headline almost every day this month. The media giant has been on a tear, surpassing prices that it hasn’t seen since February 2007. News Corp closed today at $27.90, up 0.4% from yesterday — and +9.4% since New Year’s Day, a period when the benchmark Standard & Poor’s 500 was up 5.3%. Why so much enthusiasm? Many investors are excited by the planned spin off of the newspaper properties, which usually offset profits generated by the cable networks and entertainment assets. The Street’s also intrigued to see CEO Rupert Murdoch making deals again. They liked the one in November to buy 49% of the New York Yankees’ YES Network, as well as the talk about Fox mobilizing its sports properties to create two national sports channels. With the newspaper properties going, there’s less fear that he’ll stick Fox with a deal they’ll hate — like his $5B purchase of Dow Jones in 2007. Read More »

Comments (2)

Guest List At Rupert Murdoch’s London Dinner Party Stirs Up Criticism

By | Tuesday January 29, 2013 @ 4:39am PST

Rupert Murdoch was in London last week, crowing about scoring rights to online clips of Premier League soccer matches and reportedly visiting his UK newspapers. He also held a private dinner that’s becoming a hot potato in the local media. London Mayor Boris Johnson, a rival to Prime Minister David Cameron for leadership of the Conservative Party, is widely believed to have attended along with Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, whose office confirmed his presence to The Guardian. (Also reportedly there was Homeland star Damian Lewis, whose show is produced by News Corp.-owned Fox21, and who’s a graduate of Eton, as is Johnson.) While private meetings between politicians and media owners don’t run afoul of parliamentary or party rules, this particular dinner has raised eyebrows in light of last year’s Leveson Inquiry into UK media ethics where an overriding theme was the cozy relationship enjoyed by newspaper proprietors and the highest levels of government. Read More »

Comments (10)

Murdoch Apologizes For “Grotesque, Offensive Cartoon”

By | Monday January 28, 2013 @ 11:25am PST

Gerald Scarfe’s cartoon in the UK’s Sunday Times depicts Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu using blood to build a wall that includes the bodies of Palestinians. The image, published on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, infuriated the Anti-Defamation League, which charged that … Read More »

Comments (14)

Rupert Murdoch Expected To Hold Talks With London Times Directors This Week

By | Tuesday January 22, 2013 @ 5:47am PST

After Times Newspapers independent directors refused to approve Rupert Murdoch’s appointment of editors to The Times and Sunday Times last week, the News Corp. chief has flown to London to hold a summit meeting, … Read More »

Comments (0)

Global Showbiz Briefs: ‘Come Dine With Me’, Murdoch & London Times, BAFTA Awards

ITV’s ‘Come Dine With Me’ Format In 36 Territories
ITV Studios Global Entertainment has signed multiple deals for its hit format Come Dine With Me including Asia’s first local version of the format to air on Indian broadcaster Star India. The network has commissioned 40 30-minute episodes. The Star India deal brings the total number of international territories producing the show to 36. Additionally, ITV Studios Nordic has been recommissioned to produce a 10th series of 60 episodes by Sweden’s TV4 and a second series of 40 episodes by Nelonen in Finland. Meanwhile, ITV Studios Australia has been recommissioned to produce a fourth (6 x 60’) series for Foxtel’s Lifestyle Channel to air in 2013. The format has also recently re-launched in Turkey on Fox TV and Belgium on Vier 4.  Read More »

Comments (2)
More Deadline | Hollywood »
« Previous Deadline | Hollywood