Media mogul Rupert Murdoch has abandoned his plans to merge the two companies he controls, Fox and News Corp. In a letter to Fox, the 91-year-old billionaire called the merger, proposed in October, "not optimal."
With the deal, Murdoch wanted to reunite the two media conglomerates that were separated in 2013 in the wake of a major wiretapping scandal at British tabloids. However, a group of News Corp shareholders strongly opposed the merger because certain business units were undervalued.
The proposed operation was seen as an attempt to strengthen the grip of Murdoch’s son Lachlan, a top executive of Fox, over the media conglomerates.
The merger would have brought together well-known newspapers such as The Wall Street Journal and New York Post and publisher HarperCollins with the parent company of Fox News and Fox’s many other television channels.
In addition to critical investors, Murdoch’s other son, James, reportedly opposed the merger. He reportedly wrote letters to board members of Fox and News Corp questioning its potential benefits.
James Murdoch stepped down from the News Corp board in 2020 because of a disagreement over the company’s direction.