Cable operator Comcast has asked a group of investment banks to lend it as much as $60 billion in a bridge loan so it can make an all-cash offer for the 21st Century Fox assets that Fox agreed to sell to Disney, Reuters reported Tuesday.
However, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts only intends to proceed with the offer if a federal judge lets AT&T proceed with its proposed $85 billion acquisition of Time Warner, the wire service said.
Last Wednesday, Fox Business Senior Correspondent Charlie Gasparino was the first to report Comcast's interest in the 21st Century Fox assets. In December, Disney announced that it agreed to buy the bulk of 21st Century Fox’s assets for more than $52 billion.
While it remains unclear whether the proposed $85 billion deal between AT&T and Time Warner will go through because of potential antitrust law violations, Roberts believes if the Department of Justice loses the trial, he can make a higher bid for the Fox assets, sources on Wall Street told Gasparino. 21st Century Fox is the parent company of FOX Business.
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The trial over the Justice Department’s lawsuit to end AT&T’s purchase of Time Warner ended last week, but a verdict may not be released for another month.
“The giant media company Comcast may bid for 21st Century Fox assets if AT&T prevails in its case over the government, and it can purchase Time Warner,” Gasparino told Neil Cavuto on "Cavuto: Coast to Coast". “Roberts still desires the Fox assets being purchased by Disney.”
Spokespeople for Comcast and 21st Century Fox, the parent of FOX Business and Fox News, declined to comment. Calls to Disney were not returned at the time of publication.