News Corp joins bid for Çalık assets

News Corp joins bid for Çalık assets

ISTANBUL - Reuters
News Corp., Time Warner and TPG Capital have placed bids of up to around $1 billion for the ATV-Sabah media unit of Turkey’s Çalık Holding, three sources close to the matter told Reuters yesterday.

Çalık Holding, which also has interests in energy and finance, paid $1.1 billion in 2007 for ATV-Sabah, one of Turkey’s largest media groups, and two of the sources said the company did not want to make a loss on the deal.

“TPG, (News Corp.’s Rupert) Murdoch and Time Warner placed bids. I know TPG is very aggressive,” said a source close to the process, adding the submitted bids were around $1 billion.

He said the sale process could be completed in February.

Çalık hired Goldman Sachs this month to steer the sale of ATV and Sabah, according to sources close to the matter. They said the deadline for bidding had been pushed back to the end of January, having been earlier set for Jan. 18.

“Bids were placed last week. Today or tomorrow we expect feedback,” another source close to the deal told Reuters. “It is a short list.”

Earlier this month, sources had listed private quity funds including TPG Capital and KKR & Co, along with Time Warner and RTL Group -- Europe’s biggest commercial broadcaster -- among the potential bidders.