Murdoch, Malone to Auction UK's Wireless Group

01 March 2005

News Corporation and Liberty Media, which between them hold a controlling stake (respectively 24.5% and 26.7%) in lossmaking UK radio business The Wireless Group, have hired US investment bank Goldman Sachs to find a buyer.

The move could leave TWG chief executive Kelvin Mackenzie, who holds 6.42% of the company's stock, well and truly out in the cold. He is not best known either as a businessman or as a broadcaster, his main claim to fame - or infamy as some would argue - being his high profile editorship in the 80s of NewsCorp's bestselling UK tabloid The Sun.

MacKenzie's bid to take the company private collapsed last week when his backer, US private equity group Veronis Suhler Stevenson, pulled out of negotiations [WAMN: 24-Feb-05]. He is now reportedly scrabbling to find another backer.

Insiders say that NewsCorp and Liberty, respectively headed by Rupert Murdoch and cable entrepreneur John C Malone, will consider any offers for TWG north of £100 million - thought to be the sum floated by MacKenzie.

Data sourced from; additional content by WARC staff