The Murdoch family’s new Fox needs Madison Avenue to buy commercials in an abundance of sports broadcasts. Seth Winter will take on the job of selling them. Winter, the former head of NBC Sports ad sales, is joining Fox in a similar role, taking over a critical position at the company as it focuses more intently on live programming and sports content.
New Fox, a subsidiary of 21st Century Fox, on Friday said it has no plans to bid for the 22 Fox regional sports networks that regulators have said Walt Disney must divest as part of its acquisition of large parts of 21st Century Fox.
Some of 21st Century Fox’s best-known ad-sales executives will leave the company when it closes a large sale of its assets to Walt Disney and streamlines itself into a company known currently as “New Fox” in 2019. The ad unit will be under Marianne Gambelli, a veteran who once led ad sales at NBC, who has been named president of ad sales for the “new” Fox, and will oversee efforts for units like Fox Sports, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network and Fox Broadcasting that will remain after the $71.3 billion deal closes next year.
Lachlan Murdoch, 21st Century Fox’s co-chairman, called to order what was “likely the final” stockholders meeting of his family media company on Wednesday. It was a polished, if not anticlimactic, affair that gave us an official name for New Fox — Fox — as the Walt Disney Co. prepares to ingest the former’s film and TV assets, leaving a leaner broadcasting infrastructure, sports programming, and the news operation.
21st Century Fox Executive Chairman Lachlan Murdoch said Thursday it is still an “open question” whether the company will buy back the regional sports networks it sold to entertainment company Walt Disney Co. in July as part of a $71 billion deal.
The Wall Street Journal reports that big media companies, sports teams, private-equity firms and rapper Ice Cube are among those kicking the tires of nearly two dozen regional sports networks that Disney is divesting as part of its $71.3 billion purchase of 21st Century Fox assets. “There’s never been an instance where a large group of these [regional sports networks] have been sold all at once,” said sports-media consultant Lee Berke. Initial bids on the channels are due Nov. 8. Journal subscribers can read the full story here.
What Happens Next For Tegna?
The front-runner to buy 22 regional sports TV networks from Disney is the same company that sold them in the first place. “New Fox,” the company that will remain after Rupert Murdoch sells $71.3 billion worth of 21st Century Fox assets to Disney, is the leading contender to buy back the RSNs it “sold” to Disney as part of the larger transaction, according to people familiar with the matter.
Jack Abernethy: The Local Leader Of Fox 2.0
As CEO of Fox Television Stations, he is charged with executing the local component of New Fox’s plan to reinvent broadcasting by sharply focusing on what the medium does best — delivering live programming to mass audiences. This is part 2 of a three-part special report. Yesterday focused on the station group’s strategy going forward as a crucial component of New Fox. Part 3 on Wednesday will highlight the men and women who lead the 28 stations that make up Fox Television Stations. You can read the other parts here.
Fox will be logistically ready for its pending mega-deal with the Walt Disney Co. to close Jan. 1, top exec Peter Rice told employees Wednesday. According to sources present at a town hall meeting on the Fox lot in Los Angeles, Rice reiterated that the deal is still on track to close sometime in the first half of 2019, either in the first or second quarter. But he said that structure of New Fox — down to elements such as human resources and payroll — will be ready to go by Jan. 1. Regulatory processes will likely drag the ultimate closure beyond that date.
Fox has named former White House Communications Director Hope Hicks as its chief communications officer. Hicks was head of the communications team at the White House before leaving in March. She worked for Trump at his company before he was elected.
Lachlan Murdoch unveiled Tuesday the executive team that will run a new, slimmed-down and live-TV-and-sports focused 21st Century Fox once the company sells a large chunk of its assets to Walt Disney Co., a mammoth $71.3 billion deal that is expected to close in 2019.
Gary Newman is in negotiations with 21st Century Fox to remain with the company and lead Fox Broadcasting through an anticipated transition period. Sources close to the executive have confirmed to Variety that Newman is in the final stages of talks to remain with so-called “New Fox” after the company’s mega-deal with the Walt Disney Co. is finalized. Disney’s acquisition of the bulk of Fox’s entertainment assets — including 21st Century Fox Television, the studio that Newman has run with longtime executive partner Dana Walden for nearly two decades — is expected to be completed next year.
Viet D. Dinh has been appointed chief legal and policy officer of “New Fox,” the Murdoch-controlled entity that will be spun off after most of 21st Century Fox is acquired by Disney. Dinh recently stepped down as an independent director on the board of 21st Century Fox. The new Fox portfolio will consist of the Fox broadcast network, FS1, Fox News and the company’s portfolio of television stations.
Fox TV Group chairmen and CEOs Dana Walden and Gary Newman on Thursday outlined more of the vision for “New Fox”, the Fox Broadcast Co. after its sister studio 20th Century Fox TV, along with other key 21st Century Fox assets, move to Disney in the pending acquisition. “We want to be [studios] first choice among the four networks,” Walden said. “We will be the only network to be operating completely independently. It will have the ability to pick up the best shows without any studio agenda.”