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News Corporation (often abbreviated to News Corp.) is the world's second-largest media conglomerate (behind The Walt Disney Company) as of 2008 and the world's third largest in entertainment as of 2009 . The company's Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and Founder is Rupert Murdoch.

News Corporation is a publicly-traded company listed on the Nasdaq and the Australian Securities Exchange and as a secondary listing on the London Stock Exchange. Formerly incorporated in South Australiamarker, the company was re-incorporated into Delaware General Corporation Law after a majority of shareholders approved the move on 12 November 2004.

News Corporation's headquarters is at 1211 Avenue of the Americas marker, in New York City, in the newer 1960s-1970s corridor of the Rockefeller Centermarker complex.

Revenue for the year ended 30 June 2008 was US$32.996 billion with an operating income of US$5.381 billion. Almost 70% of the company's sales come from its US businesses. On 16 January 2009 the Government Accountability Office reported that News Corp has 152 subsidiaries in low-tax or no-tax countries, one of four companies to have more than 100.

History

News Corp was created in 1980 by Rupert Murdoch as a holding company for News Limited. News Limited was created by Murdoch from the assets he inherited in 1952 following the death of his father, Sir Keith Murdoch, and subsequent expansion. The main asset left to him was ownership of the Adelaidemarker afternoon tabloid, The News.

In 1986 and 1987, News Corp (through subsidiary News International) moved to adjust the production process of its British newspapers, over which the printing unions had long maintained a highly restrictive grip. A number of senior Australian media moguls were brought into Murdoch's powerhouse, including John Dux, who was managing director of the South China Morning Post. This led to a confrontation with the printing unions NGA and SOGAT. The move of News International's London operation to Wappingmarker in the East End resulted in nightly battles outside the new plant. Delivery vans and depots were frequently and violently attacked. Ultimately the unions capitulated.

Moving into the United States

News Corp made its first acquisition in the United States in 1973, when it purchased the San Antonio Express-News. Soon afterwards it founded the National Star, a supermarket tabloid, and in 1976 it purchased the New York Post. In 1981 News Corp bought half of the movie studio 20th Century Fox, buying the other half in 1984. In 1985 News Corp announced it was buying the Metromedia group of stations, setting the stage for the launch of a fourth U.S. broadcast network. On 4 September 1985, Murdoch became a naturalised citizen to satisfy the legal requirement that only United States citizens could own American television stations. In 1986, the Metromedia deal closed, and the Fox Broadcasting Company was launched. This network, known on-screen as "Fox", can now be picked up in over 96% of U.S. households.

In 1987 News Corp bought The Herald and Weekly Times Ltd in Australia, the company that Rupert Murdoch's father had once managed. By 1992, News Corp had amassed huge debts, which forced it to sell many of the American magazine interests it had acquired in the mid-1980s. Much of this debt came from its stake in the Sky Television satellite network in the UK, which incurred massive losses in its early years of operation, which (like many of its business interests) was heavily subsidised with profits from its other holdings until it was able to force rival satellite operator British Satellite Broadcasting to accept a merger on its terms in 1990. (The merged company, BSkyB has dominated the British pay-TV market since.)

In 1993 News Corp acquired a 63.6% stake of the Hong Kongmarker-based STAR TV satellite network for over $500 million, followed by the purchase of the remaining 36.4% in July 1995. Murdoch declared that:

In 1995, the Fox network became the object of scrutiny from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) when it was alleged that its Australian base made Murdoch's ownership of Fox illegal. The FCC, however, ruled in Murdoch's favor, stating that his ownership of Fox was in the public's best interests. It was also noted that the stations themselves were owned by a separate company whose chief shareholder was U.S. citizen Murdoch, although nearly all of the stations' equity was controlled by News Corp. In the same year News Corp announced a deal with MCI Communications to develop a major news website as well as funding a conservative news magazine, The Weekly Standard. In the same year, News Corp launched the Foxtel pay television network in Australia in a partnership with Telstra and Publishing and Broadcasting Limited.

In 1996, Fox established the Fox News Channel, a 24-hour cable news station to compete against Ted Turner's rival channel CNN.

In 1999, News Corp significantly expanded its music holdings in Australia by acquiring the controlling share in a leading Australian based label, Michael Gudinski's Mushroom Records; merging it with already held Festival Records to create Festival Mushroom Records (FMR). Both Festival and FMR were managed by Rupert Murdoch's son James Murdoch for several years.

In late 2003, News Corp acquired a 34% stake in DirecTV Group, (formerly: Hughes Electronics), from General Motors for Electronics, operator of the largest American satellite TV system, for US$6 billion. DirecTV Group sold in 2008 to Liberty Media's Malone, in exchange to his News shares.

In 2007 News Corporation reached an agreement to purchase Dow Jones, publishers of the Wall Street Journal, for an estimated $5.6 billion. On 15 October 2007 the corporation spun off a business news channel from Fox News - Fox Business Network. The channel's lawyers were "reviewing all of the fine details of the contract" between Dow Jones and CNBCmarker, said Alexis Glick, Fox Business Network's vice president of business news and the channel's morning anchor. But, she added, "we will actively use" the other Dow Jones properties. "...this new channel is a bit tedious. Somehow, business is more interesting when treated in a business-like way", commented Rob Carrick in 16 October's Toronto Globe and Mail. On 8 February 2007, Murdoch promised guests at the McGraw-Hill Media Summit that, "a Fox channel would be more business-friendly than CNBCmarker. That channel leap[s] on every scandal, or what they think is a scandal", he said.

Shareholders

  • In August 2005 the Murdoch family owned only about 29% of the company. However, nearly all of these shares were voting shares, and Rupert Murdoch retained effective control of the company. Nonetheless, John Malone of Liberty Media had built up a large stake, with about half of the shares being voting shares. Therefore, in November 2006, News Corporation announced its intention to transfer its 38.5 per cent managing interest in DirecTV Group to John Malone's Liberty Media; in return it bought back Liberty's 16.3% shares in News Corp., giving Murdoch tighter control of the latter firm. Murdoch sold 17.5 million class A shares in December 2007.
  • Saudi prince Al-Waleed bin Talal, who is an investment tycoon and chairman of the Kingdom Holding Company, said in an interview with Charlie Rose that he had about a 6-7% stake in News Corp.
  • Years after when Elektra Records was absorbed in 2004, News Corporation owned half of the re-issues from the record label company.


Corporate governance

The company's Board of Directors consists of 15 individuals:

Office of the chairman



Holdings

Books

  • HarperCollins book publishing company
  • Zondervan Christian book publisher
    • Youth Specialties - organisation helping youth workers worldwide through training seminars and conventions, resources and the internet.
    • Inspirio - religious gift production.


Newspapers



Magazines

  • News America Marketing (weekly Sunday newspaper coupon insert/website)
  • Australian
    • Alpha Magazine
    • Australian Country Style
    • Australian Golf Digest
    • Australian Good Taste
    • Big League
    • BCME
    • Delicious
    • Donna Hay
    • Fast Fours
    • GQ (Australia)
    • Gardening Australia
    • InsideOut (Aust)
    • Lifestyle Pools
    • Live to Ride
    • Notebook
    • Overlander 4WD
    • Modern Boating
    • Modern Fishing
    • Parents
    • Pure Health
    • Super Food Ideas
    • Truck Australia
    • Truckin' Life
    • twowheels
    • twowheels scooter
    • Vogue (Australia)
    • Vogue Entertaining & Travel
    • Vogue Living
  • InsideOut (UK Based Magazine)


Music and radio

India

  • Radio City(20%, held through STAR TV) - commercial FM network with stations in 20 cities.

Russia

  • Nashe (50%)
  • Best FM (50%)


Sport



Studios



TV

News Corp agreed to sell eight of its television stations to Oak Hill Capital Partners for approximately $1.1 billion as of 22 December 2007. The stations are US Fox affiliates.

Broadcast



Satellite television



Cable

Cable channels owned (in whole or part) and operated by News Corporation include: PLATFORMS
  • India
    • Hathway Cable & Datacom (22.2%), India's 2nd largest cable network through 7 cities including Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai & Pune
  • Taiwan
    • Total TV (20%), Pay TV platform with JV partner KOO's Group majority owner (80%). News Corp also has a 20% interest in the KOO's Group directly


Internet



Other assets

  • NDS - Conditional access technology and personal digital video recorders (PVRs) (49%)
    • Jungo
    • Timothy Coville
    • ITE, publisher of Playstation and Mobile games, and interactive television
    • Orbis Technology, supplier of online gambling software
  • Broadsystem Ltd (UK) - Telephony provider for media companies, bought in 1991
  • Broadsystem Australia (Australia)
  • Broadsystem Ventures (UK) - provider of cheap-rate telephone calls, particularly for customers of Sky Television. Bought outright in 1999.
  • Jamba! - Mobile Entertainment/Mobile Handsets Personalisation/Games.
  • News Outdoor Group - Largest outdoor advertising company in Eastern Europe with over 70,000 ads including billboards and bus shelters, operating in Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, India, Israel, Poland, Romania, Russia (96 cities), Turkey & Ukraine.
    • Maximedia Israel (67%)
    • Mosgorreklama (50%) - Russia sign and marketing material manufacturer
    • Kamera Acikhava Reklamclik (?) - leading outdoor advertising company in Turkey
  • Australian Associated Press (45%) - real time news service.
  • Stats Inc (50%) - worlds leading provider of sporting information and statistical analysis (a JV with Associated Press)
  • Fox Sports Grill (50%) - Upscale sports bar and restaurant with 7 locations - Scottsdalemarker, Arizonamarker; Irvinemarker, Californiamarker; Seattlemarker, Washingtonmarker; Planomarker, Texasmarker; Houstonmarker, Texasmarker; San Diegomarker, Californiamarker; and Atlantamarker, Georgiamarker.
  • Fox Sports Skybox (70%) - Sports fan's Bar & Grill at Staples Centermarker and 6 airport restaurants.
  • News America Marketing (US) - (100%) - nation’s leading marketing services company, products include a portfolio of in-store, home-delivered and online media under the SmartSource brand.


Annual conference

News Corporation organises an annual management conference, discussing media issues related to geopolitics. Attendees include News Corporation executives, senior journalists, Politicians and Celebrities. Previous events were in Cancunmarker, Mexico, and the Hayman Island off the coast of Australia. The events are private and secretive, there are no records available for the agenda or talks given at the conferences, and no uninvited journalists are permitted access.

The 2006 event in Pebble Beachmarker, Californiamarker was led by Rupert Murdoch. According to a copy of the agenda leaked to the Los Angeles Times and other media accounts, issues discussed related from Europe to broadcasting and new media, terrorism to the national policy. The event included speeches from Rupert Murdoch, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Prime Minister Tony Blair, Bono, Al Gore, Senator John McCain and Bill Clinton while Israel's President, Shimon Peres, will appear on a panel named Islam and the West. The Other notable attendees include Newt Gingrich and Nicole Kidman.

See also



References

  1. http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/global500/2009/industries/145/index.html
  2. http://www.viacom.com/investorrelations/Investor_Relations_Docs/Q407%20Web%20Deck%20FINAL.pdf
  3. http://money.cnn.com/2009/02/09/news/companies/disney_dreamworks.fortune/?postversion=2009020914
  4. News Corporation - Annual Report 2007
  5. 83 Percent of Companies Had Tax-Haven Units GAO Says, Bloomberg.com, 2009-01-16
  6. Revolution on Fleet Street, TIME magazine, 1996-08-21.
  7. [1]
  8. [2]
  9. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/apr/22/chinathemedia.rupertmurdoch
  10. Fox Business makes TV debut, Hollywood Reporter, 16 October 2007. Accessed: 10-17-2007.
  11. Fox Business Network blazes new trail, USA Today, 14 October 2007. Accessed: 2007-10-17.
  12. Fox Business: Fluff meets financial, Toronto Globe and Mail, 16 October 2007. Accessed: 2007-10-17.
  13. Rupert Murdoch Speaks His Mind, Business Week, Feb 2007.
  14. News Corp and Liberty Media, USA Today, 2006-12-22.
  15. News Corp Murdoch trust sells shares, The Age, 2007-11-16.
  16. Murdoch's son sees pay doubled ahead of exit, Daily Telegraph, 2005-08-26.
  17. Charlie Rose interview with Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, video.google.com


External links




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