21st Century Fox gets Irish clearance for Sky takeover

Murdoch’s media company has offered over €13bn to acquiring remaining Sky shareholding

Rupert Murdoch, chairman of Fox News Channel, aboard The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum in New York in May. (Photograph: Al Drago/The New York Times)

Rupert Murdoch, chairman of Fox News Channel, aboard The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum in New York in May. (Photograph: Al Drago/The New York Times)

 

Twenty-First Century Fox has been given clearance to acquire the shareholding in Sky that it doesn’t own by Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Denis Naughton.

According to a statement from Rupert Murdoch’s company, the minister advised that the proposed transaction will not result in sufficient plurality for any audience in the Republic of Ireland.

The decision follows clearance of the proposed transaction by Austria, Germany, Italy and the European Commission.

UK Culture Secretary Karen Bradley is expected to announce her decision on the deal on Thursday. It is understood that she has received reports from Ofcom and the UK competition and markets authority on the specified public interest grounds and media plurality.

The Murdoch owned media company currently owns over 39 per cent of Sky Plc and is by far the biggest single shareholder.

Twenty-First Century Fox has offered $14.8 billion (€13.1 billion) to buy the 61 per cent of Britain’s Sky it does not already own, reigniting a row in the UK over whether the Australian-born businessman has too much influence.

-(Additional reporting: Reuters)