James and Lachlan Murdoch urged the British government to let their company buy pay-TV group Sky, saying on Wednesday that further delays to the $15 billion deal could sour the climate for foreign investment in Britain after Brexit.
The Murdochs’ Twenty-First Century Fox was dealt a blow last month when Britain’s media secretary, Karen Bradley, said she was persuaded that buying Sky could give the family too much influence over the media.
Bradley said she was minded to refer the deal for a lengthy investigation, but has not yet announced her final decision.
“While we await the outcome of the regulatory process, important investment decisions will inevitably need to be deferred,” the two sons of Rupert Murdoch said in a letter to Bradley, dated July 14 and published on Wednesday.
“There is also the broader risk of a potential harmful effect on other companies’ inward investment decisions currently under consideration in the UK.”
Fox executive chairman Lachlan and chief executive James said the deal was one of the biggest investments in Britain since the country voted to leave the European Union last year.
“Our proposed transaction will be carefully scrutinised by others keen to gauge the government’s commitment to creating a climate conducive to investment, or in the words of the Prime Minister and several of your fellow ministers, ‘open for business’,” they told Bradley.