Comcast and 21st Century Fox will finalize their rival bids to takeover European pay-TV giant Sky with a one-day auction.
The UK’s Takeover Panel Hearings Committee confirmed Thursday (Sept. 20) that the auction will settle ongoing competition between the two companies to acquire Sky.
Both companies agreed to the terms of the auction, which will consist of no more than three rounds of bidding, commencing at 5 p.m. London time on Friday (Sept. 21), ending the following evening, assuming neither makes a final bid before the start time.
In the first round, the company with the lower bid (currently Fox) may make an increased bid. In the second round, Comcast will have the opportunity to increase its bid. If the auction hasn’t concluded by the end of the second round, each company will get to place a final bid in the third and final round.
All offers will be made in cash in pounds sterling.
In December 2016, Fox announced its intention to acquire the 61% of Sky shares it did not already own, offering £10.75 per share.
In February 2018, Comcast threw its hat into the ring by announcing its intent to make a firm offer, and followed up in April with an offer of £12.50 per share.
After incremental offers and counter-offers, neither company has made its offer final, meaning that the potential for increased or amended offers have kept the bidding process open thus far.
The results of the auction will be made public as soon as practicable following the final bids.