The Instituto Federal de Telecomunicaciones (IFT), entity that regulates the telecommunications market in Mexico, has officially announced this last Tuesday, June 8th, that it has allowed the Lauman Group to acquire Fox Sports Mexico, which belonged to The Walt Disney Company. Up to now, the Group has not expressed itself on the plans it has for Fox Sports business in Mexico.
The Lauman Group had confirmed the acquisition of Fox Sports Mexico at the end of May, although, until that moment, the operation still needed to be approved by the IFT. In addition, the sale of Fox’s sports business in Mexico was one of the requirements that the regulator ordered Disney, in order to approve its merger with 21st Century Fox, completed in March 2019. Although the IFT did not give details about the amount of the transaction, from the newspaper ‘El Financiero‘, owned by the Lauman Group, they had reported that the Fox Sports Mexico sales agreement was valued at ‘more than USD 300 million’.
‘The IFT determined that in the sale agreement between the Lauman Group and 21st Century Fox subsidiaries it was not identified that it features issues or clauses that may create risks in terms of economic competition, and it is expected that the consummation of said agreement on its terms, it would result in the acquisition of the Fox Sports business in Mexico underway, viable, competitive and independent from Disney’, they reported from the IFT. In addition, the Mexican regulator has also informed that the Laumann Group ‘has the financial and incentives abilities to acquire and operate the Fox Sports business in Mexico, as well as to adequately and immediately conclude the disincorporation process’’.
Grupo Lauman is a Mexican media conglomerate, chaired by businessman Manuel Arroyo. The entity owns the telecommunications company Comtelsat, the newspaper ‘El Financiero’ and the pay TV channel ‘El Financiero Bloomberg’. Earlier this year, the Group was reported as one of those interested in acquiring Fox’s sports business in Mexico. The confirmation came after the IFT decided in early May not to give The Walt Disney Company a new deadline for it to complete the sale.