Disney Wins Regulatory Approval Necessary for Fox Acquisition

Disney has just scored another major victory in their quest to buy 21st Century Fox against bidding rival Comcast. Bloomberg reports that Disney has just received a crucial regulatory approval necessary to acquire Fox for $71.3B.


The Department of Justice has raised surprisingly few concerns over the merger in spite of having a number of reservations over the merger between AT&T and Time Warner, which recently passed in spite of a drawn-out legal battle. Their only demand from the home of Mickey Mouse and his friends was that Disney needed to sell Fox’s 22 regional sports networks within 90 days of acquiring Fox, in order to avoid creating a monopoly on televised sports coverage.


This does not make a Disney-Fox merger a done deal. Disney still has to get approval from other, smaller regulatory bodies; this may have been the biggest hurdle they needed to overcome, but it’s not the only one. Furthermore, Comcast still has time to respond and offer another counterbid, which rumors indicated that they were planning on doing after Disney upped their offer by nearly $20B. However, the DOJ’s thumbs-up in Disney’s direction makes it difficult for Comcast to justify why they’d be a better home to the assets by Fox, considering that their proposed acquisition would have the same issues that gave the DOJ pause over AT&T and Time Warner. While the DOJ lost that case, Fox most likely wants this deal done as soon as possible and without any significant delays.