CMA details scope of Fox-Sky investigation in issues statement

CMA details scope of Fox-Sky investigation in issues statement

That included votes cast on behalf of 21st Century Fox, Sky's largest shareholder, which is capped at 37.19% - and means that Mr Murdoch's appointment was also backed by a majority of independent shareholders.

Later on Thursday, shareholders voted in favour of the re-election of Murdoch´s son James as chairman.

The Institute of Directors had urged Sky top consider replacing Murdoch as chair if he had fallen below 50 percent support of shareholders not affiliated with Fox.

The 21CF release added: Reference is made to the announcement made on 15 December 2016 by the 21st Century Fox Board and the Independent Committee of Sky that they had reached agreement on the terms of a recommended pre-conditional cash offer by 21st Century Fox for the fully diluted share capital of Sky which 21st Century Fox and its Affiliates do not already own.

However, this was an improvement on previous year, when more than 50% opposed Mr Murdoch's reappointment.

"There´s nothing wrong with Mr Murdoch - but it is because of the name".

They claimed that, because Fox is now trying to buy full control of Sky, he could not be a completely independent chairman of the latter.

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"Independent oversight of the board is particularly important given Fox's ongoing bid to acquire Sky".

Competition and Markets Authority or CMA announced Tuesday, regarding its investigation into the proposed takeover of Sky Plc by 21st Century Fox, that it will now examine how the deal would impact media plurality and broadcasting standards in the UK.

Its bid, which is strongly opposed by some lawmakers and is subject to lengthy regulatory scrutiny, hangs over the European pay-TV group, which reported quarterly results earlier on Thursday.

"Are you confident that the CMA won't unearth new Fox scandals which derail the bid?", Alaphia Zoyab from activist group Avaaz asked.

"I am not going to comment on the Twenty-First Century Fox issues because this is the AGM of Sky, but I am pretty confident that it will not have an effect on the CMA's investigation", he said.

Like-for-like revenues were up five per cent to £3.3bn in the three months to 30 September, from £3.1bn this time past year. The pay package handed to Sky's chief executive, Jeremy Darroch, quadrupled to more than £16m in the year to the end of June, despite a hefty fall in annual profits at the broadcaster's United Kingdom and Ireland business.

"We've had a strong start to our new financial year with good revenue growth and excellent profit growth", said chief executive Jeremy Darroch.

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