Regional pay-television company Austar United Communications Ltd has again attracted the attention of pay-TV company Foxtel, with billionaire James Packer and Foxtel chief Kim Williams behind the push, according to a report in The Australian.
Austar's majority-owner, the US-based pay-TV and broadband company Liberty Global, last year said a tie-up with Foxtel made good strategic sense, but Foxtel's "relatively convoluted" ownership structure muddied the waters.
Foxtel is half-owned by Telstra Corporation Ltd, while News Corporation and the Packer-backed Consolidated Media Holdings Ltd each hold a 25 per cent stake.
According to The Australian, all three Foxtel shareholders are open to an Austar deal, and preliminary talks are underway.
Austar made news yesterday for selling its wireless spectrum to NBN Co, the company behind the broadband network.