Iger Reportedly Set to Extend Contact if Fox Deal Closes

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

And it may go to Fox Chief Executive James Murdoch.

Disney and 21st Century Fox's on-again, off-again talks, which fizzled somewhat at the end of last month, appear to be back on, with the two sides zeroing in on a deal that could close as soon as next week. (Both Fox and Disney declined to comment.) Any telecom or media giant's purchase of Fox would be the latest in a long line of mergers and acquisitions that have effectively consolidated media power in just a few entities; in recent years, Comcast acquired NBCUniversal and Verizon snapped up AOL (which owns the Huffington Post and a number of smaller publications) and Yahoo.

"If Disney is successful in acquiring the Fox RSNs, it would combine the biggest national sports network in the US, ESPN, with the biggest RSN group in the country, along with some of the most popular college conferences (SEC, ACC, and BTN)".

"It's always good to look at what's going to create the most value for our shareholders", he told attendees.

Disney CEO Bob Iger will likely remain at the company to oversee any potential merging of Disney and Twenty-First Century Fox assets, CNBC has learned.

The agreement, which would acquire the approval of federal regulators, would include 20th Century Fox film studio, 20th Century Fox Television, FX Networks, and a majority stake in the streaming service Hulu.

It is unclear if any Disney deal would be conditional on Fox's Sky bid succeeding, but today CNBC journalist Daniel Farber said: "It's my understanding that Disney would want to own all of Sky".

A finalized deal could be announced as early as next week.

It is rumored that this deal will be valued at above $60 billion.

They would also be a source of new content at a time when companies like Amazon.com Inc and Netflix Inc are spending billions to bulk up on programming.

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