Disney’s $71 billion acquisition of the 21st Century Fox entertainment assets will take effect on Wednesday, March 20, the companies said Tuesday morning, CNN reports.
“It will be an epochal event in the entertainment business — the merging of two movie studios and the end of Fox as we all knew it,” the story reports. “Staffers at the 20th Century Fox studio are bracing for layoffs and other big changes.”
Disney will own the studio, a controlling stake in Hulu, and a suite of entertainment channels that includes FX and Nat Geo, among other assets. What’s left of 21st Century Fox will be spun off into a new company to be known as Fox, which will include the Fox broadcast network, Fox News and Fox Sports.
“Analysts expect that Disney will lay off at least 5,000 people — some on the Fox side, others on the Disney side — as a result of consolidation,” CNN reports. “The company has not commented on the specific plans, but investors have been told to expect ‘at least $2 billion in cost synergies by 2021 from operating efficiencies realized through the combination of businesses.'”