News Corp. board approves spinoff plan


News CorporationNews Corp. directors will move forward with CEO Rupert Murdoch‘s plans to split the company into two divisions next month. The board also approved a $500 million stock repurchase program to follow the split. The spinoff, set for 6/28, will create “21st Century Fox,” (at one point it was to be called “Fox Group”) which will include entertainment operations, cable and broadcast networks including the namesake film studio, Fox TV, sports and News networks as well as the National Geographic Channels and stakes in BSkyB and Tata Sky.

The other will keep the News Corp. name (at one point it was to be called “News Corp. Publishing”) and include newspapers and book publishing. Shareholders will receive one share of the print media company as a stock dividend for every four current News Corp. shares.

News Corp. won’t have to cover the costs of any civil settlements tied to the scandal over the illegal interception of voice-mail messages by journalists at its U.K. newspapers.

The publishing spinoff will start out with $2.6 billion in cash after receiving a $1.82 billion infusion from the parent company.

Per a Forbes article, News Corp. also offered details on who will ascend to the board of the two companies. Murdoch and sons Lachlan and James will take seats on both. Also on the print media company’s board: John Elkann, the one-time Fiat chairman; Ana Paula Pessoa, a partner at PR agency Brunswick Group and a former executive at South American media company Globo; and Masroor Siddiqui, an investing type from Naya Management. And at 21st Century Fox: Delphine Arnault, a Christian Dior deputy general manager; Jacques Nasser, the former Ford CEO; and Robert Silberman, executive chairman at Strayer Education.