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21st Century Fox president thinks Disney deal ‘should complete by summer 2019’

Peter Rice says transition of staff to Disney "will be seemless"

21st Century Fox president Peter Rice has told employees he expects the planned acquisition of the company by Walt Disney to be completed by summer 2019.

Speaking at a town hall event in Los Angeles, Rice said he expects the deal to be done by the end of next summer at the latest. His prediction of an end date is somewhat earlier than that of Disney CEO Bob Iger who has previously said he expected the acquisition to take a full 24 months, and complete in December 2019.

According to Deadline, during the town hall, Rice jokingly called the remaining Fox assets “Diet Fox,” when someone made the comparison between New Fox and New Coke. Rice then said the new company will probably just be called Fox.

The new company, whatever it’s called, has to be up and running the day the transaction goes through.