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Who Might Buy Fox Regional Sports Networks from Disney?

According to a report from Bloomberg, Disney has begun the process to find a seller for Fox Regional Sports Networks, which they acquired in their $71.3 billion acquisition of Fox last month.

One of the conditions of closing the deal was that Disney would divest the Fox-owned Regional Sports Networks. There seems to be a wide variety of bidders for the properties which include 22 RSNs covering 44 basketball, baseball and hockey teams.

Some of the possible buyers are:

  • Cable companies like Comcast or Dish Network
  • Tech companies like YouTube or Amazon
  • Affiliate groups like Sinclair, Tenga, or Nexstar
  • Private Equity firms like Blackstone Group, CVC Capital Partners, or Apollo Global Management
  • Sports teams like the New York Yankees (YES Network) buying back channels

The most likely outcome is that a single a bidder will acquire the majority of the channels, with some individual channels being strategically offloaded in certain markets.

Because of the importance of these channels to acquiring or retaining live television viewers, the deal is expected to fetch $20-30 billion.

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