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Murdoch, Gordon allow Ten to go to CBS

Australian media owner Bruce Gordon and News Corp executive co-chairman Lachlan Murdoch have failed to challenge the transfer of Network 10 shares, all but guaranteeing the takeover of the broadcaster by American television network CBS. Last Friday’s 4pm deadline for challenges passed without notification from either of the businessmen. A Supreme Court directions hearing scheduled...

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Australian media owner Bruce Gordon and News Corp executive co-chairman Lachlan Murdoch have failed to challenge the transfer of Network 10 shares, all but guaranteeing the takeover of the broadcaster by American television network CBS.

Last Friday’s 4pm deadline for challenges passed without notification from either of the businessmen. A Supreme Court directions hearing scheduled for today will confirm Mr Gordon and Mr Murdoch’s decision to withdraw from Network 10 bidding, as receivers KordaMentha push for the transfer of shares to CBS.

The decision comes after a report from independent auditors KPMG found that shares in the broadcaster are practically worthless.

Network 10 is believed to be valued between negative $1.05 billion and negative $529.2 million when debts to CBS and 21st Century Fox are considered.

KordaMentha will soon attend a three day hearing regarding the transfer of CBS shares, listed to be held from October 31. The date will coincide with a meeting of the Foreign Investment Review Board, which must approve the transfer.

Last month, the company’s shareholders overwhelmingly backed the bid from CBS, which was preferred by KordaMentha over an offer by Mr Murdoch and Mr Gordon that had been complicated by a delay in agreement on the federal government’s media law changes.

An attempt by Mr Gordon to delay the shareholder vote via his regional broadcaster WIN Corporation ultimately failed in the Supreme Court.

Mr Murdoch owned a 7.7 per cent share of Network 10, while Mr Gordon held 15 per cent of shares before allowing the broadcaster to fall into administration after refusing to secure a $200 million Commonwealth Bank loan to the network.

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