Disney to acquire rest of Jetix shares

Shareholding to increase from 74% to 96%

LONDON -- Walt Disney has secured agreements to buy up outstanding shares in the Pan-European children's entertainment group Jetix Europe.

The move will take its holding from 74% to 96%, and it plans to delist the former Fox Kids Europe outfit from Amsterdam's Euronext exchange, Disney-ABC networks president Anne Sweeney said Monday.

Disney expects to complete the transaction before the end of the year, and will pay 11 euros ($14) per share, valuing the transaction at 247 million euros ($318 million).

Shares in the broadcaster have fallen from a 12-month high of 19 euros as investors wrote down media shares and concerns emerged over carriage deals.

Disney's Sweeney said the deal would allow the entertainment giant to further integrate Jetix with Disney's own brands and improve programming.

"By achieving operating efficiencies, we will have additional opportunities to create more family-friendly programming and locally produced content across Europe," she said.

Disney acquired its original interest in Jetix Europe (formerly Fox Kids Europe), when it purchased Fox Family Worldwide from News Corp. in 2001.
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