Southeastern Asset Management has purchased a 12% voting stake in News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA) (NASDAQ:NWS), according to an SEC filing on Tuesday. Southeastern Asset Management had teamed up with Carl Icahn to oppose Michael Dell’s $24.8 billion buyout bid for Dell Inc. (NASDAQ:DELL). They argued that Michael Dell and Silver Silver Lake Partners’ offer significantly undervalued the computer maker. Carl Icahn and Southeastern Asset Management had also proposed an alternative offer. But Carl Icahn dropped his bid last week. Though their resistance to Michael Dell and Silver Lake’s bid resulted into a sweetened offer.
Southeastern second largest voting stakeholder
News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA) (NASDAQ:NWS) was formed on June 28 after its parent company News Corp was split into two independent companies. One is News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA) (NASDAQ:NWS) itself, which operates publishing businesses including the New York Post, The Wall Street Journal, HarperCollins and Dow Jones Newswires. The other one, 21st Century Fox, operates film and television businesses.
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Southeastern Asset Management purchased 23.8 million Class B shares of the company, representing 12% voting stake or 4.1% economic interest. Based on News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA) (NASDAQ:NWS)’s closing price on Tuesday, the stake is valued at about $397 million. That makes the investment firm the second-largest voting stakeholder of the company after Rupert Murdoch. Chairman Rupert Murdoch owns 39% of the company’s voting stock or 14% economic interest. Saudi Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal has also piled up 6.6% voting stake in the company.
Southeastern has no plans to go activist on News Corp
Southeastern Asset Management chief O. Mason Hawkins said that he hasn’t planned to go activist on News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA) (NASDAQ:NWS), reports Andy Fixmer of Bloomberg. The Memphis, Tennessee-based investment firm has about $33 billion of assets under management. Southeastern Asset Management also holds stake in Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) and FedEx Corporation (NYSE:FDX).
Following the report, News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA) (NASDAQ:NWS) shares jumped 1.61% to $16.99 at 10:51 AM EDT.