News Corp Chief Executive Rupert Murdoch said he doesn’t plan to rush into any huge acquisitions, including NBC, as News raised its fiscal 2010 earnings outlook following better-than- expected first-quarter results amid an improving ad market.
The company declined to comment on the Travel Channel negotiations, citing disclosure agreements. Murdoch said the company will be disciplined in pursuing acquisitions. “We are not going to go rushing into huge things unless we see a really wonderful fit,” he said.
The comments came as Comcast is holding talks with General Electric about taking a majority stake in media conglomerate NBC Universal.
News Corp revealed an 11% increase in profits to $571m for the three months to September, aided by Twentieth Century Fox’s blockbuster takings for Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, the highest grossing international animated movie of all time.
Murdoch’s cable television stations enjoyed a 41% surge in profits to $495m. But News Corp continues to struggle with its digital offerings. Murdoch revealed that the social networking website MySpace has failed to deliver on a minimum level of web traffic it guaranteed under an advertising tie-up with Google three years ago. As a result, it will not receive all of the $900m that Google had agreed to pay for the right to offer search and advertising on MySpace.
Meantime Murdoch also admitted that plans to charge from next June for his newspapers (where ad sales have plummeted) content would likely be delayed.