Sources: Comcast Looks For RSN Buyers Ahead Of Next Fox Bid
Comcast is identifying potential buyers for Fox Sports' RSNs in an "attempt to ease antitrust concerns about a new bid to acquire most of Fox’s assets," according to sources cited by O'Donnell & Roumeliotis of REUTERS. Sources said that Comcast "hopes that preparing now for such divestitures will ease Fox’s concerns over potential antitrust risks and boost the chances of its bid disrupting" Fox’ $71B deal to sell the assets to Disney. Sources added that the RSNs "could be worth" as much as $20B. Sources said that Comcast is "talking to private equity firms," including Apollo Global Management and Blackstone Group, to "gauge interest about acquiring the RSNs." The sources added that it is possible that a telecom or media company might also "express interest." Sources said that Comcast believes "finding such partners will not only allow it to argue that it can win antitrust approval for the Fox assets as easily as Disney, but will also boost its finances as its prepares to make a second all-cash offer later this month." Fox shareholders are "scheduled to vote on the Disney deal on July 27." Sources said that Comcast is "planning to make its bid before then" (REUTERS, 7/9).