Monday, 23 October, 2017

James Murdoch re-elected Sky chair despite shareholder rebellion

Rupert Murdoch is executive chairman of 21st Century Fox Rupert Murdoch is executive chairman of 21st Century Fox
Nicole Thomas | 13 October, 2017, 00:34

That included support from largest shareholder Fox, which controls a voting stake of 37.19 percent in Sky.

Today, Sky noted that if 21st Century Fox's offer is not approved by the CMA by the end of the year, a special dividend of 10p per Sky share will be paid to shareholders in February 2018.

A Sky spokeswoman said Mr Murdoch was "uniquely well-placed" to be chairman.

Observers said that the result meant that slightly more than 50 percent of independent shareholders backed Murdoch, 44, this year, compared with last year when slightly more than 50 percent had not supported him.

Later on Thursday, shareholders voted in favour of the re-election of Murdoch´s son James as chairman.

They claimed that, because Fox is now trying to buy full control of Sky, he could not be a completely independent chairman of the latter.

Murdoch passed the question to independent director Martin Gilbert, who led an independent board assessment of the Fox bid.

Wenger To Make 2 Changes: Predicted Arsenal XI vs Watford
Wenger did however have good news regarding Mesut Ozil. "Not all the players are back". Silva said: "Tomorrow we will do the first session after he's back this afternoon".

Ofcom's chief executive has given a robust defence of the regulator's decision not to recommend a referral of 21st Century Fox's proposed takeover of Sky plc to competition watchdogs on concerns over broadcasting standards.

"Are you confident that the CMA won't unearth new Fox scandals which derail the bid?", Alaphia Zoyab from activist group Avaaz asked.

Sky's subscriber base swelled by a 160,000 new customers in the three months to late September, up 51 percent on a year earlier, it said in a trading update.

Mr Darroch said it was a strong start to the new financial year: "Against the backdrop of pressure on consumer spending and lower spend on United Kingdom television advertising, we were particularly pleased with our own EBITDA growth of 15% in our established business".

"We continue to see strong customer demand for our products and services, so net customer additions in the quarter are 50 percent higher than past year", Darroch told reporters. The company launched new streaming services in Spain and Switzerland in the quarter.

"We've had a strong start to our new financial year with good revenue growth and excellent profit growth as investments we've made come through", the group's chief executive Jeremy Darroch commented in the statement, adding that fantasy drama Game of Thrones had "become the most watched series ever on Sky", while the group's home-grown drama Riviera had achieved 20 million downloads.

Shares of Sky, which are valued at 1075p under 21st Century Fox's takeover bid, closed 13p higher at 926.5p.

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