Disney gets DOJ approval to buy Fox, but must divest sports networks

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The Department of Justice has approved the Walt Disney Company's proposed purchase of 21st Century Fox properties on the condition that the company divests Fox-owned regional sports networks (RSNs).

That's bad news for Comcast, which has been trying to outbid Disney for the Fox properties. Fox is reluctant to sell to Comcast because of concerns about obtaining regulatory approval of such a deal. The DOJ's approval of the Disney/Fox deal gives Fox another reason to reject any further bids from Comcast.

Technically, the DOJ filed a court complaint to block the Disney/Fox merger today. But the agency also filed a proposed final judgment that would let the merger proceed if Disney agrees to the DOJ's conditions. That's standard procedure for when the DOJ wants to impose conditions on a merger but doesn't intend to block it entirely.

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