One of the largest media companies in the world is partnering
with the most famous sports franchise in American history.
is buying a 49% stake in the Yes Network, the regional cable
television home of the New York Yankees. The deal stipulates that
News Corp. has the option to expand its Yes Network ownership to
80% after three years.
That's a big get for News Corp., which owns all the Fox
networks. The Yankees remain the crown jewel of baseball with
their star-studded rosters, obscenely high payroll, large
national following and clout within the most populous city in
America. Yes is the most valuable regional sports network in the
country, valued at roughly $3 billion.
That said, it is still a regional network, so its reach is
limited. That's probably why News Corp.'s purchase of the network
isn't doing much for the company's stock price yet. News Corp.
shares are up just a tick (+0.12%) in mid-day trading.
For the year, News Corp. shares have risen more than 31%. At
$24.48 a share, the stock is just off its decade-high of $25.96,
established back in September.
NWS shares are already trading at more than 22 times earnings,
so there's not a ton of room to run right now. But the company's
deal with Yes should only improve future earnings.