With the deal expected to be completed by 1st January 2019, there could be a hurdle ahead for the Disney / Fox merger. While concerns continue in Europe regarding when we will be receiving Disney+, there’s little doubt that the service will launch, but new issues in North America regarding market share in the sports realm could cause a potential problem.
The highly-anticipated Disney and Fox merger had been moving along rather smooth until it hit a regulatory snag in Brazil earlier this month. Now, regulators in Mexico are questioning how the merger will affect the country’s cable industry.
The primary cause of concern for the regulatory body in Mexico will be Disney’s increased portfolio of sports content. According to Mexican newspaper El Universal, Disney would own nearly 30% of the programming in the market while companies like Warner Brothers and Universal owning substantially less content at 15.12% and 11.45%, respectively.
Stateside, the merger received conditional approval from the Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission dependent of Disney’s ability to sell the regional sports networks acquired in the merger. Disney had begun shopping all regional sports networks around, hoping to find one buyer to purchase all 22 networks, to no avail. Earlier this week, the New York Post had reported that Disney will likely be forced to break the networks into groups to make them more affordable for potential buyers.
Here’s hoping the issue is resolved to everyone’s satisfaction so the deal can be completed.