21st Century Fox has suggested it could sell Sky News to the Walt Disney Company as it aims to push through its plan to take full control of Sky.
Fox has offered to turn Sky News into a separate legal entity that would be transferred to Disney as soon as 21st Century Fox’s acquisition of Sky is complete, irrespective of whether Disney’s deal to purchase Fox goes through. In this case, the company has guaranteed to fund Sky News at its current levels for ten years.
The second offer to the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is to turn Sky News into a separate legal entity with its own independent board and editorial independence that is continued to be owned by Sky but with funding guaranteed for 15 years.
“We have worked diligently with the CMA throughout its extensive review. In fact, we believe that the enhanced firewall remedies we proposed to safeguard the editorial independence of Sky News addressed comprehensively and constructively the CMA’s provisional concerns. These enhanced remedies went above and beyond what Ofcom, the expert, independent regulator on UK broadcasting, had stated would mitigate concerns around media plurality,” said 21st Century Fox in a statement.
A Sky statement added: “Sky believes that both of these remedy proposals comprehensively address any plurality concerns the CMA may have, and would guarantee the long-term future of Sky News and its ongoing editorial independence."