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The months-long bidding war for 21st Century Fox’s movie and television assets may be over.
Comcast, which has been locked in a can-you-top-this contest with Disney for the prized Fox assets, is unlikely to submit a sweetened bid to top the current leading offer from the Mouse House, according to a report.
Instead, Comcast will turn its attention — and financial firepower — to its concurrent effort to win a bidding contest for British TV network Sky, CNBC reported, citing sources.
Comcast did not return calls for comment.
Disney recently raised its offer for Fox’s assets to $71 billion, besting Comcast’s bid of $65 billion in cash.
At the same time, Comcast has been battling Fox for control of Sky. Fox owns 39 percent of the satellite TV provider and is bidding for the remaining 61 percent.
Fox’s latest bid values Sky at $32.5 billion. Comcast’s latest bid valued the UK company at $34 billion.
An insider told The Post that Washington’s decision to appeal a recent court ruling that allowed AT&T to buy Time Warner may have spooked Comcast — convincing it to back away from pursuing Fox.
Both the AT&T-Time Warner deal and a Comcast-Fox deal would be so-called vertical mergers — that is, deals between companies that don’t compete in the same businesses.
But the government, in its losing AT&T lawsuit, claims the telco would wield too move pricing power should it acquire Time Warner’s Turner Broadcasting — which includes CNN, TBS and HBO.
There is also a feeling of “uncertainty” inside Comcast and a “lack of confidence” in chairman and chief executive officer Brian Roberts’ plan to continue upping the ante in the battle for Fox, a source said.
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