European Commission officials on Tuesday searched the London offices of media mogul Rupert Murdoch’s company, 21st Century Fox, in connection with an inquiry into the corporation allegedly abusing its dominant position during the broadcast of major sports events, The Guardian reported.
An unidentified spokesperson for Fox Networks Group, a subsidiary of the corporation that distributes cable channels around the world, said the company was cooperating with the investigators.
Apart from Fox, other companies were inspected too, the BBC reported. However, it is not clear which companies were raided and when.
The commission said that unannounced inspections were a “preliminary step into suspected anti-competitive practices”, and that it was concerned they had violated the European Union’s “anti-trust rules that prohibit cartels and restrictive business practices”.
21st Century Fox is at present under regulators’ scrutiny for its attempts to buy British broadcasting company Sky. Murdoch’s company has submitted a bid to buy the 61% of Sky it does not own for £18.5 billion (approximately Rs 1.67 lakh crore), but competition watchdogs in Britain have refused to allow the sale to go through without Murdoch first ensuring the independence of Sky News.
United States cable television giant Comcast submitted a £22.1-billion (approximately Rs 2 lakh crore) bid in February.