Rupert Murdoch is overseeing internal discussions on splitting his News Corp. media company into two, one focusing on publishing and the other on entertainment, according to two people familiar with the matter. The talks are at a late stage, one of the people said.
Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. made a $2 billion takeover offer for Australia’s Consolidated Media Holdings on Wednesday, boosting top shareholder and billionaire James Packer’s warchest as he abandons media in favour of casinos.
Comcast is exploring whether the British Sky Broadcasting Group, Britain’s largest satellite broadcaster and a lucrative pay TV asset 39% owned by News Corp., could become available for purchase, according to several people briefed on the company’s strategic thinking.
News Corp. lawyer Michael Silverleaf told a court hearing Friday that “we are dealing with 500 claims, potentially” from people who say their voicemail messages were intercepted by the now-defunct News of the World.
BBC quiz show host and television news presenter Jeremy Paxman told a media ethics inquiry that current CNN host Piers Morgan, then editor of Britain’s The Mirror, told him how to change phone security settings to listen to messages.
Rebekah Brooks, a close confidante of Rupert Murdoch, was charged on Tuesday with interfering with a police investigation into a phone-hacking scandal that has rocked the tycoon’s News Corp. media empire and sent shockwaves through the British political establishment.
Operation Elveden, the investigation into allegations that News Corp. reporters bribed police, Army and defense ministry officials to get scoops, has more potential to upend News Corp. than the more sensational phone hacking scandal.
FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski testified Wednesday that his agency takes calls to cancel Fox’s broadcast licenses “very seriously.” During a Senate Appropriations subcommittee hearing on Wednesday, Sen. Frank Lautenberg pressed Genachowski on whether he plans to do anything about the allegations. Genachowski said it wouldn’t be appropriate to comment on a specific case, but that the commission is “certainly aware of the serious issues that have been raised in the U.K.”
News Corp. spent $63 million on hacking-related costs in the quarter ending March 31; overall in the first nine months of fiscal 2012, costs related to the ongoing investigations dating back to the closure of The News of the World last summer have run to $167 million.
Excluding the absence of the NFL championship, advertising revenues at the television stations and broadcast network were essentially flat from a year earlier. Retrans revenue doubled.
Rupert Murdoch faces limited risk of losing News Corp.’s U.S. broadcast TV station licenses, even amid screaming headlines in Britain that the media mogul is unfit to run a major company.
A U.K. parliamentary committee’s searing indictment of Rupert Murdoch on Tuesday may trigger legal headaches for him in the United States and spur opposition to the renewal of News Corp.’s television licenses, according to legal experts.
Hulu.com owners Walt Disney Co., Comcast and News Corp. are close to buying out Providence Equity Partners’ stake at a price valuing the company at about $2 billion, said two people with knowledge of the matter. Providence is selling its 10% of Hulu for about $200 million after investing $100 million when the venture began in 2007, according to the people, who weren’t authorized to talk publicly.
The 81-year-old media magnate apologized today before a U.K. panel for the British phone-hacking scandal. He noted that the corporate cleanup that followed had cost his New York-based News Corp. hundreds of millions of dollars and transformed its culture.”I failed, and I’m sorry about it,” Murdoch said.
Speaking before an inquiry on Wednesday, the News Corp. chief, Rupert Murdoch, sought to deflect suggestions that he wielded influence with British officials to further his corporate interests.
The News Corp. chairman is testifying today before the inquiry set up following a phone hacking scandal at one of News Corp.’s British newspapers.
News Corp., owner of Fox Broadcasting, reduced the voting power of non-U.S. shareholders to comply with the country’s law governing broadcast station licenses. The company suspended the voting rights of 50% of the Class B shares held by investors who aren’t U.S. citizens, according to a statement today. The change will last “as long as the company deems it necessary to maintain compliance with U.S. law,” News Corp. said.
A British parliamentary report into a phone hacking scandal may lead eventually to News Corp. being forced into cutting or selling its stake in the highly profitable pay-TV firm BSkyB, having already dropped its bid to buy it outright last year.
Fleet Street lawyer Mark Lewis says he plans to file three separate lawsuits against Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. on behalf of clients who believe their phones were hacked while they were on U.S. soil.
Britain’s hacking scandal spilled into television as Sky News, whose parent company is controlled by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp., said a reporter had accessed e-mails.
Rupert Murdoch on Thursday declared war against “enemies” who have accused his pay TV operation of sabotaging its rivals, denouncing them as “toffs and right wingers” stuck in the last century. The 81-year-old News Corp. chief executive tweeted: “Seems every competitor and enemy piling on with lies and libels. So bad, easy to hit back hard, which preparing.”
Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. is taking steps to start a U.S. sports network on cable TV aimed at challenging ESPN, according to people with knowledge of the situation. While a final decision hasn’t been made to move forward, the company is considering converting its Fuel action-sports network to the new channel, two of the people said.
Pressure is building in Britain and Australia for fresh probes into Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp., already under siege over phone-hacking claims, after allegations that it ran a secret unit that promoted pirating of pay TV rivals.
Former News International executive Rebekah Brooks and her racehorse trainer husband Charlie were arrested Tuesday in dawn raids that also netted four other suspects in the spreading phone hacking scandal.
In the midst of a scandal that reaches new lows every day, Rupert Murdoch’s reactions have ranged from the canny and shrewd to the absurd. Given his tight control over News Corp., don’t expect any changes soon.
News Corp. said today that James, the youngest son of 80-year-old media mogul Rupert Murdoch, has relinquished his position at News International to concentrate on expanding the company’s television business. The 39-year-old James will still remain deputy chief operating officer of News Corp. but the move plucks the one-time heir apparent to his father’s global empire away from a firestorm over his credibility and his role in Britain’s expanding phone-hacking scandal.
“Ratings today are a bit disappointing,” and the show needs “freshness and excitement and originality,” Chase Carey today told an investor conference that also questioned him about a potential spin-off of the conglomerate’s newspaper business, the L.A. Dodgers and the phone hacking scandal.
Rupert Murdoch will address hostile journalists at his Sun and Times newspapers on Friday, many of them fearful after the recent arrests of senior staff over apparent widespread criminality at the British titles.
News Corp. is dealing with the fallout of the British tabloid phone-hacking scandal. The company’s global affairs will be led by Michael Regan, executive vice president for government affairs and head of its Washington operations.
Last week’s eight arrests in England sharply increase the danger to News Corp. of potential multimillion dollar fines by U.S. authorities as part of the continuing investigation into alleged bribery of public officials under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). The threat of prosecution under the FCPA constitutes the greatest danger of the phone-hacking scandal for Rupert Murdoch’s media empire. It could expose the company to tens of millions of dollars in fines and the risk of imprisonment of its executive officers.
What happened on the fateful night last May when Rupert Murdoch decided how News Corp. would manage its phone-hacking scandal?
Executives from News Corp., NBCUniversal, the Walt Disney Co. and the National Association of Broadcasters met with officials at the FCC on Monday to express their displeasure at proposed public interest rules that would force TV networks to share details online about political advertising, including the rates that political campaigns pay for ad time.
That includes both the Fox network and TV stations. The gains were driven by network ad revenue and a greater than 100% increase in retransmission consent revenues.
U.S. authorities are stepping up investigations, including an FBI criminal inquiry, into possible violations by employees of Rupert Murdoch’s media empire of a U.S. law banning corrupt payments to foreign officials such as police, law enforcement and corporate sources say.
Don’t tell Wells Fargo Securities’ Marci Ryvicker that Big Media are washed up as infotainment power shifts to tech giants such as Google and Apple. The long-time analyst of broadcasting and pay TV companies says that CBS, News Corp., and Time Warner are likely to outperform the overall market while Disney and Viacom keep pace.
News Corp. will lose its head of communications next month, the company said Monday, as Teri Everett becomes the latest senior executive to depart the media conglomerate on Feb. 11.