This is a complicated annual exercise for 21st Century Fox — and its predecessor, News Corp — as it tries to comply with U.S. laws that bar a company from owning TV station licenses if non-citizens control more than 25% of its total voting shares. To stay under that threshold, Fox applies a discount to the votes of non-U.S. shareholders. And with 31% of its Class B voting shares held by foreigners, the company determined that it could reduce the discount to 35% from 40%. If you’ve followed along this far, you might wonder whether a process that discounts some investors’ holdings would inflate the clout of CEO Rupert Murdoch and his family who control 39.4% of the B shares. Not to worry: The company says they’ll stay at that percentage of the total by agreeing not to vote or provide voting instructions for “a portion” of their shares. When all’s said and done, about 711.9M Class B shares will be entitled to vote at the annual meeting that’ll be held October 18 in Los Angeles. As a technical matter, Fox (which includes the Fox studio and TV networks) is the same company that we knew as News Corp until June. At that point the Murdoch-controlled publishing assets and Australian media properties were spun off into a new entity that’s now called News Corp.
Fox Changes Shareholder Voting Formula As Annual Meeting Approaches
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