BSkyB advances plans to merge European TV assets

UK pay-TV firm BSkyB has enlisted Morgan Stanley and Barclays to advise on its plans to acquire German and Italian sister companies Sky Deutschland and Sky Italia, in what would be a US$13.57 billion deal, according to Reuters. (Pictured: Rupert Murdoch)
June 16, 2014

UK pay-TV firm BSkyB has enlisted investment banks Morgan Stanley and Barclays to advise on its plans to acquire German and Italian sister companies Sky Deutschland and Sky Italia in a €10 billion (US$13.57 billion) deal, according to a Reuters report.

The proposed deal would mean that BSkyB – 39% of which is owned by Rupert Murdoch’s (pictured) 21st Century Fox, which would retain this stake  - acquires Fox-owned Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland, of which Fox owns about 57%.

The merger would unite Murdoch’s European TV assets and create a pay-TV giant with 20 million subscribers.

According to Reuters, both Morgan Stanley and Barclays are already advisers to BSkyB, and are being employed for the proposed deal.

BSkyB confirmed the potential acquisition on May 12, saying in a statement that “this combination would have the potential to create a world-class multinational pay TV group.”

At that point, the company said a deal had not advanced beyond a preliminary stage, and no agreement had been reached “on terms, value or transaction structure,” adding that the deal was not yet certain. A BSkyB spokesperson decline to comment when contacted by realscreen today.


About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.