Published: Thu, May 17, 2018
Economy | By

No more Family Guy: James Murdoch to leave Fox after Disney deal

No more Family Guy: James Murdoch to leave Fox after Disney deal

Rupert Murdoch will become co-chairman, alongside his son.

Lachlan Murdoch has been serving as co-executive chairman, along with Rupert, of 21st Century Fox since the company split from News Corp while his brother James has been CEO.

The deal sells off Fox's TV and Entertainment sections, leaving the company to focus exclusively on its news and media divisions which will include Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, Fox Broadcasting Company, Fox Sports, Fox Television Stations Group, and sports cable networks FS1, FS2, Fox Deportes and Big Ten Network.

Another drama playing out has 21st Century Fox trying to acquire the 61 percent of Sky it doesn't already own, though European regulators have been dragging their collective feet deciding on the appropriateness of that deal.

Lachlan said: "We have worked through the winter 'standing up" a reimagined independent Fox.

There was no mention of him in either his brother or father's comments on the new leadership structure on Wednesday.

The new Fox will house assets including Fox News, Fox Business Network and sports cable networks, the company said. Speculation about James at the time of the deal centered on a possible role at Disney, where CEO Bob Iger's contract had been slated to end in 2019, and an heir apparent was not in place.

The widely expected move comes as Fox tries to complete the Disney deal, which involves selling about $US52 billion ($65 billion) of entertainment assets. It looks to become a leaner business focused on Fox News, cable sports networks and local TV. However, Comcast has let it be known that it is strongly considering mounting a rival bid for the 21st Century Fox assets.

The Murdochs are expected to spearhead the new, slimmer Fox once the deal shakes out.

Nallen has been at his current post since as Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for 21st Century Fox since 2013 and oversees all of the company's financial aspects, including capital market and merger and acquisition transactions. That would undoubtedly delay, if not derail, the Disney sale process and the formation of New Fox.

Rupert Murdoch added: "The new Fox will begin as the only media company exclusively focused on the domestic market; focused on what Americans love best - sports, news and entertainment, built and delivered for a United States audience".

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