Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal’s investment firm sold a stake valued at almost $US190 million in News Corp, reducing its holding in Rupert Murdoch’s media company to about 1 per cent.
Alwaleed’s Kingdom Holding cut its ownership of Class B shares to 2 million from 13.2 million, or 6.6 per cent, it said in a statement to the Saudi bourse Wednesday. The sale generated 705 million riyals ($241.7 million), which will be used for other investments, it said. Through Kingdom, Prince Alwaleed holds stakes in companies including Citigroup and Twitter.
Alwaleed, who had the second-largest holding of voting stock in News Corp after the Murdoch family, has been a staunch ally of the media baron. He publicly supported the family’s running of News Corp amid phone-hacking revelations in 2011 that saw the New York-based company abandon its bid to take over the rest of European pay-TV operator Sky Plc.
“The reduction of KHC’s holding in News Corp has been decided in the context of a general portfolio review,” Alwaleed said in a statement on Kingdom’s website. “We remain firm believers in News Corp’s competent management, led by CEO Robert Thomson, and are fully supportive of Rupert Murdoch and his family.”
Full article: Rupert Murdoch exposed as Saudi billionaire Alwaleed sells most of stake in News Corp (The Sydney Morning Herald)