Ten shareholder Lachlan Murdoch is believed to have withdrawn from the fight to stop the takeover of the struggling TV broadcaster by US giant CBS.
Shareholders had until 1600 AEDT on Friday to give notice to the NSW Supreme Court that they would seek to oppose the transfer of Ten’s shares to CBS.
However by the deadline on Friday it is understood Mr Murdoch – who holds his stake in Ten through investment vehicle Illyria – had not lodged or joined any application.
The actions of Bruce Gordon – Mr Murdoch’s fellow shareholder and partner in an earlier bid to take control of Ten – are not known but it is understood no notice of any action had been received by Ten’s administrators late on Friday.
On Monday the court in Sydney will hold a directions hearing to begin the process of transferring all of Ten’s shares – which have been valued as worthless in an expert report – to CBS.
The CBS takeover, worth more than $40 million, trumped a competing offer from billionaire Ten shareholders Mr Murdoch and Mr Gordon, and was accepted by Ten’s creditors in September.
Mr Gordon failed with a court bid to derail the CBS deal, and was previously reportedly preparing an appeal of that decision.
KPMG evaluated Ten’s business to ensure shareholders are not being disadvantaged by the CBS deal, in which the US broadcaster will pay nothing for Ten’s shares.
On Tuesday, the auditor described Ten’s shares as worthless, saying the net value of Ten’s business operations is far outweighed by the value of its outstanding content contracts with CBS and Twentieth Century Fox.
KPMG said Ten’s business would need to have a net value of $646.9 million in order for its shares to have any value, well above the $112 million it was worth under the best case scenario KPMG applied to its analysis.