Report: Comcast Inquiring About Purchasing BSkyB
Comcast is inquiring about whether the British Sky Broadcasting Group "could become available for purchase," according to Amy Chozick of the N.Y. TIMES, who cited several people briefed on the company's strategic thinking. Comcast is "thinking about a possible deal," but the company "has not made a formal offer or even approached BSkyB or News Corporation about negotiations." Comcast Vice Chair and CFO Michael Angelakis "denied that the company had any interest in acquiring BSkyB.” Angelakis said, "This is complete rubbish. It is total speculation and inaccurate.” As News Corp. "faces the fallout" of an ongoing phone-hacking scandal in Britain, its stake in BSkyB "has come under question." Acquiring BSkyB would "make strategic sense" for several U.S. media companies, including Comcast, DirecTV and Liberty Media, "that want to expand their footprints" in the int'l pay-TV business" (N.Y. TIMES, 6/8). Meanwhile, DAILY VARIETY's Jill Goldsmith reported that Comcast and other media companies "routinely consider all potential deals in the space" and the N.Y. Times story suggests that investment bankers may be the ones "drumming up interest in this one" (VARIETY, 6/8). However, N.Y. Times spokesperson Danielle Rhoades Ha said, “We are standing by our story” (BLOOMBERG, 6/8).