Sky Shareholders Approve Reappointment of James Murdoch as Chairman

Ruben Ruiz
October 13, 2017

The investors argue that Fox's attempt to buy the United Kingdom group presents a conflict of interest for Murdoch who is both chairman of Sky and chief executive of 21st Century Fox.

Mr Darroch said the group's investment in production was "delivering", with customer viewing to Sky pay channels up 10% year-on-year.

More than 28% of shareholders voted against Mr Murdoch's comeback as chairman last year, four years after he stood down from the position in the wake of the phone-hacking scandal at the News of the World.

James Murdoch has narrowly survived a rebellion by independent Sky shareholders to be re-elected as chair of the British satellite broadcaster.

Fox, which now owns 39.1% of Sky, is trying to buy full control of the business in a deal that would value the parent of Sky News at £18.5bn.

In a stock exchange announcement detailing the AGM vote, Sky said: "The board is pleased that the majority of resolutions have been passed with a high level of support from shareholders".

"The board notes the significant vote against. the Directors' Remuneration Report, and. the re-election of James Murdoch, and will continue to engage with shareholders to understand their views as part of its ongoing programme of engagement", the company said on Thursday.

Sharon White, Ofcom chief executive, has defended the decision made by the regulator over 21st Century Fox's proposed takeover of Sky.

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The committee includes Mr Gilbert, Jeremy Darroch, Sky's chief executive and Andrew Griffith, Sky's chief operating officer.

Competition and Markets Authority or CMA announced Tuesday, regarding its investigation into the proposed takeover of Sky Plc by 21st Century Fox, that it will now examine how the deal would impact media plurality and broadcasting standards in the UK.

21st Century Fox and News Corp, parent company of Dow Jones, share common ownership.

Sky's subscriber base swelled by a 160,000 new customers in the three months to late September, up 51 percent on a year earlier, it said in a trading update.

"We continue to see strong customer demand for our products and services, so net customer additions in the quarter are 50 percent higher than previous year", Darroch told reporters.

He said the first series of Sky's home-grown drama Riviera achieved 20 million downloads, while Game of Thrones had become the most watched series ever on Sky.

He said the company was seeing good demand for its flagship Sky Q product as well as for its streaming service Now TV.

Other reports by GizPress

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