Time Warner Puts Up Takeover Hurdle By Changing Bylaws

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Rupert Murdoch and Jeff Bewkes

The media company disclosed the changes Monday in a move to defend against a takeover bid from Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox.

Time Warner has changed its bylaws to prevent shareholders from calling special meetings, a move Wall Street interpreted as a way to thwart a takeover bid from 21st Century Fox.

Before the change in its bylaws, which were disclosed Monday in a regulatory filing, Time Warner allowed just 15 percent of its shareholders to call a meeting.

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Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox has bid about $80 billion — about $85 a share — to acquire Time Warner, but Time Warner's board and CEO Jeffrey Bewkes have rejected the proposal.

Some analysts predict that 21st Century Fox will eventually offer $100 a share for Time Warner. The conglomerates stock has climbed 23 percent in the past week on such speculation, and Monday it closed at $87.36.