Fox Corp. Pays Disney Sale Dividend, Sets May 9 Investor Meeting

Cynthia Littleton

Fox Corp. has handed over an $8.5 billion check to help Disney offset tax costs related to the 21st Century Fox acquisition.

As spelled out in the Disney-21st Century Fox merger agreement, the Murdoch clan’s newly established Fox Corp. was on the hook to pay a special dividend to 21st Century Fox on the latter’s last day as a standalone company to help cover tax-related costs associated with the sale.

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Fox Corp. paid the $8.5 billion special dividend to its former parent company, 21st Century Fox, on Tuesday, but Fox Corp. now stands to receive a $2 billion refund check from Disney as the relevant tax bill for the merger came in at $6.5 billion. That total included about $700 million in estimated costs related to Disney’s pending divestiture of Fox’s 22 regional sports networks — a sale mandated by the Justice Department as a condition of its approval of the deal.

Fox Corp. also said Wednesday that it will hold an investor conference on May 9, with further details to come.

On Tuesday, Fox Corp. shares began trading in the $40 range. The stock was down 3.3% to $40.34 at the close of trading Tuesday. It opened Wednesday at $39.85. Disney shares also took a 2.8% hit on Tuesday to close at $110. Disney perked up Wednesday to open at $112.95.

More to come

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