The first round to bid for 22 regional sports networks currently owned by Walt Disney Co. from Twenty-First Century Fox has started. Amazon participated in the bidding. The company added YES Network, carrying Brooklyn Nets game, too to its list, which is maintained both by Fox and Yankee Global Enterprises in New York that air the sets of 44 expert teams from the Nation Basketball Association, the National Hockey League, and Major League Baseball. Other participants of the initial bidding for the regional networks are Sinclair Broadcast, KKR, Tegna, Apollo Global Management, and Blackstone as per CNBC.
Fox May Participate in Future Bidding
In December 2017, Fox and Disney arrived into a $52.4 billion deal for some of Fox’s assets. However, Fox didn’t pursue obtaining the channels it recently sold to Disney.
Though Fox didn’t attempt the first round of the bidding, there’s a possibility that it’ll participate to the next round. Earlier this year, the company, which owns the sports channel ESPN, sold television and movie assets to Disney.
Who Elevated The Bid?
The Department of Justice requested to open the bid for the 22 regional sports networks that Disney currently handles. The compulsory direction to sell them is to avoid the cost of cable sports programming to fly high. DOJ wants to protect the consumers. This has been supported by the statement of Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim that American consumers get the benefit if there’s a one-on-one competition between Fox and Disney when it comes to preserving considerable cable television subscription prices to air sports programs.
Under the arrangement with the Justice Department, Disney has been given 90 days to sell the Fox assets. Although the exact amount of the bids has not been released, the next round of proposals is anticipated before the current year ends.