Ian Whittaker, media fairness researcher at Liberum, advised CNBC’s “Squawk Box Europe” on Friday that Comcast’s determination to scrap its pursuit of Fox might be interpreted as a “warning shot” to Disney — in addition to an admission of the U.S. cable big’s willingness to settle for a “division of the spoils.”
“The first thing is actually to suggest to Disney a division of the spoils. So essentially, to say you as Disney, you take Fox’s U.S. assets… we as Comcast actually take Sky, including the 39 percent stake that Fox currently owns,” Whittaker mentioned.
“The second thing is… It essentially sends a warning shot to Disney over Sky. It essentially says, ‘We pulled out of the bid for the assets of the U.S., we therefore have more firepower available. If you come back with a revised bid, we can actually go higher as well,’” he added.