Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox Inc. made an $80 billion takeover bid in recent weeks for Time Warner Inc. that was rebuffed, the New York Times reported, citing people briefed on the matter whom it didn’t identify.
Time Warner shares rose 13 percent to $80.40 in early New York trading. As part of the proposal, Fox indicated that it would sell CNN to ward off potential antitrust concerns since Fox News competes directly with CNN, New York Times said. Putting CNN on sale would probably lead to a bidding war for the news channel as CBS and ABC, a unit of the Walt Disney Co., have long been seen as interested suitors, the newspaper said.
Fox first approached Time Warner in early June, New York Times reported. Chase Carey, the president of Fox and a longtime top lieutenant to Murdoch, met privately with Time Warner’s chief executive officer, Jeff Bewkes, the newspaper said. Later that month, Fox delivered a formal takeover proposal worth $85 in stock and cash for each Time Warner share.
Nathaniel Brown, a Fox spokesman in New York, declined to comment on the report when reached by Bloomberg News.