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By Ian Walker
Comcast Corp. (CMCSA) on Wednesday extended the acceptance period for its 25.9 billion pound ($33.8 billion) cash offer for British broadcaster Sky PLC (SKY.LN) for the second time, after getting a low level of support as Sky shareholders hold out for higher offers.
NBCUniversal Inc.'s owner, Comcast, which has been battling Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox Inc. (FOX) for control of Sky since April, said it had received acceptances representing 5.2 million Sky shares, or 0.29% of its share capital by the second deadline of 1200 GMT Wednesday. It has now extended the acceptance period to 1200 GMT on Oct. 6.
This compares with acceptances for about 3.84 million of Sky's shares, or 0.21% of its share capital, by the first deadline of 1200 GMT on Aug. 22.
Sky said in a short statement that it had noted the timetable extension. Sky shares closed largely flat on Wednesday, at 1,545 pence.
Comcast's offer for Sky is GBP14.75 a share and has been recommended by Sky's board. This compares with Fox's offer of GBP14 a share for the 61% of Sky that it doesn't already own, which originally had the backing of Sky's board but was withdrawn after Comcast raised its offer on July 11.
The first deadline for Sky shareholders to accept the Fox offer is 1200 GMT on Sept. 17. Fox also has a deadline of Sept. 22 to revise its current offer for Sky which values it at GBP24.5 billion and is a 5% discount to Comcast's current offer.
Fox first launched its bid to consolidate ownership of Sky in December 2016, but the deal was held up by British regulators. Comcast emerged as a suitor for Sky in February, confirming a takeover proposal in April.
Sky is 39% owned by Fox, which shares common ownership with News Corp. (NWS), the parent company of Dow Jones.
Read more about the Sky takeover at https://on.wsj.com/2JhQx1C (WSJ paywall) or https://bit.ly/2AVhhWV (NewsPlus).
-- Adria Calatayud contributed to this article.
Write to Ian Walker at email@example.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
September 12, 2018 13:36 ET (17:36 GMT)
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