Australia: ACCC: Foxtel-Fox Sports merger is fair game

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has announced its decision not to oppose the merger of pay TV provider Foxtel and sports channel Fox Sports.

The proposed merger would not substantially lessen competition, the ACCC found, despite increasing News Corp’s stake in Foxtel as a result. News Corp owns 100% of Fox Sports and half-owns Foxtel with Telstra; following a merger, News Corp would own 65% of the company while Telstra would own 35%.

“The ACCC won’t oppose this merger after finding that the commercial incentives of Foxtel, Fox Sports, News, and Telstra will not be substantially altered. Therefore, the change in ownership structure is unlikely to substantially lessen competition,” ACCC Chair Rod Sims explained.

“Foxtel and Fox Sports have a close and long-standing relationship, operating within the ownership of News and Telstra. Given News’ current interests in both Foxtel and Fox Sports, it would be unlikely that Fox Sports would be made available to competitors of Foxtel in the absence of the merger.”

Full Content: Reuters

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