The Arabist

The Arabist

By Issandr El Amrani and friends.

Bin Talal backs Murdoch

It would seem weird if an Arab prince and business would save Fox News from slipping from Rupert Murdoch's hands, wouldn't it? Well, that may very well happen:

The Australian Financial Review said Thursday that Prince Alaweed bin Talal, listed by Forbes as the world's fourth-wealthiest individual, had thrown his support firmly behind Murdoch.

The prince owns about three percent of non-voting shares in News Corp. and offered to boost his stake if needed, the newspaper said in a report from New York.

"I have the utmost confidence in Mr Murdoch, his management team and his succession plan," bin Talal said, as quoted by the Review, saying that Saudi companies would be willing to boost their stake to defend his position.

"If necessary, the kingdom companies and I will convert currently owned shares and purchase additional ones to increase ownership of voting shares in News Corp. in support of Mr Murdoch and his plans."

The prince added that Murdoch's sons Lachlan and James were qualified to run News Corp.

At least with Murdoch Bin Talal can be sure he can buy positive coverage...