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Volume 10 No. 23
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Rupert Murdoch Eyes Pan-European Pay-Television Platform

Rupert Murdoch is exploring using his minority stake in Sky to combine his Sky-branded businesses in the U.K., Italy and Germany "into a pan-European pay-television platform," according to Hammond, Garrahan & Mance of the FINANCIAL TIMES. A transaction "is at the early stages of consideration" which would see the £14B ($23.5B) U.K. satellite and broadband group buy the Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland businesses he controls through 21st Century Fox, his U.S. entertainment group. No deal talks were taking place between Sky and Fox, and "no transaction was imminent." Any deal would depend on "stars aligning," including Sky Italia securing Serie A football rights and the share price of the publicly quoted Sky Deutschland, in which Fox has a controlling stake, being at an affordable level (FT, 5/10).