Disney to Buy Huge Chunk of Murdoch Empire in $52B Deal

Walt Disney Co. has agreed to buy several parts of 21st Century Fox, acquiring a significant chunk of Rupert Murdoch’s empire in a $52.4 billion stock transaction. As part of the deal, Disney CEO and Chairman Robert Iger has agreed to put off his planned retirement until 2021 to smooth the transition. The deal is expected to have massive ramifications for the film and television industry: Disney is buying the 20th Century Fox movie and television studios, including shows like The Simpsons and Empire as well as Fox Searchlight; 22 cable networks dedicated to sports; Fox’s stake in Hulu; major cable networks; and stakes in overseas television providers. The move is expected to bolster Disney’s coming streaming service, which is thought to more directly rival Netflix. The agreement does not include Murdoch’s News Corp. properties, such as Fox News, Fox Sports, and The Wall Street Journal.