News Corp. Splits Publishing and Entertainment Businesses


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Just two days ago, we reported News Corp., and chairman Rupert Murdoch were contemplating the idea of splitting their news and film assets from their print publication and newspaper divisions.

News Corp owns 20th Century Fox film studio, Fox broadcast network and Fox News channel, in the way of television and film. As far as newspaper and print media goes, they own the Wall Street Journal, the Times of London, the Australian newspaper, HarperCollins book publishing, and more.

Today, Murdoch sent out a memo to his staff confirming that indeed the split is going to be a reality. While Murdoch will remain chairman to both entities, and lead what he calls the creation of new companies, many changes will have to take place for the businesses to function independently. All Things D has published Rupert's Memo to his employees.

Here's a few segments:

"It is with much enthusiasm and personal pride that I share with you today’s news regarding our plan to drive towards the next, transformative phase of this organization you and I have built together into one of the largest, most innovative media companies of our time."

"That very size and breadth has created an opportunity to separate News Corporation into two global leaders in their own right — we will wow the world as two, as opposed to merely one."

"I believe our leadership is born out of a spirit of innovation. We have never accepted the status quo. We have always been driven by the belief that we can do better — deliver a better product for our audiences and provide better performing businesses for our shareholders. Our success has come from our speed, flexibility and creativity in responding to changing markets, in combination with our commitment to serving our customers’ needs."

"I will personally be leading the creation of our new companies and will serve as Chairman of both organizations and as CEO of the media and entertainment company. Chase Carey will continue to partner with me on leading the media and entertainment business, by serving as President and COO. We are busy working on other important details and will inform you as they become available."

It will take about a year to get through the process of splitting the two companies, and in the end, the broadcasting and film side of the business will be much larger. Current shareholders of News Corp. will be given one share in each company, for each share they hold now.

Murdoch says the decision to split the company comes after a three year review of the structure of the organization, and that the two companies that result from the split, will be better managed than the one is right now. No doubt many issues and alterations will arise as a result of the split. We'll keep you posted as the situation with the News Corp. split evolves.