NBC names Hoda Kotb as Lauer replacement on ‘Today’

Hoda Kotb
Updated 03 January 2018
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NBC names Hoda Kotb as Lauer replacement on ‘Today’

NEW YORK: NBC News opened the new year Tuesday by appointing Hoda Kotb as co-anchor of the “Today” show’s first two hours with Savannah Guthrie, replacing Matt Lauer following his firing on sexual misconduct charges in late November. Kotb, 53, will continue to co-host the show’s fourth hour with Kathie Lee Gifford.
It will be the first all-female team headlining “Today” in the show’s 65-year history. Diane Sawyer and Robin Roberts blazed that path for ABC’s “Good Morning America” in the 2000s, but morning shows have traditionally paired a man and a woman as host. With an audience dominated by women in an era where news of badly behaving men is frequent, the Guthrie-Kotb pairing may be particularly timely.
“Today” won’t be an all-female zone in its first half, however, with longtime weather forecaster Al Roker and correspondent Carson Daly as regulars. Megyn Kelly hosts the show’s third hour.
“This has to be the most popular decision NBC News has ever made and I am so thrilled,” Guthrie said on Tuesday, announcing the appointment on the air.
“I am pinching myself,” said a beaming Kotb, sitting beside her. “I think we should send some medics to Alexandria, Virginia, where my mom has likely fainted.”
Lauer’s eventual replacement had long been the subject of internal angst but with a sudden decision forced upon the network, Kotb’s performance made it easier. She’s subbed for Lauer since the day he was fired and “Today” has won four straight weeks in the ratings, after having spent much of the past few years in second behind ABC.
“Hoda has seamlessly stepped into the co-anchor role alongside Savannah, and the two have quickly hit the ground running,” NBC News Chairman Andy Lack said in a memo to staff on Tuesday. “They have an undeniable connection with each other and most importantly, with viewers, a hallmark of ‘Today’.”
Lack said Kotb “has the rare ability to share authentic and heartfelt moments in even the most difficult news circumstances. It’s a tribute to her wide range and her innate curiosity.”


Comcast beats Fox in Sky auction with $39 billion bid

Updated 22 September 2018
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Comcast beats Fox in Sky auction with $39 billion bid

  • Sky is currently trading at $20.57 a share — above Comcast’s latest offer price of $19.14
  • Sky’s subscription base of 23 million and rights to English Premier League football make it one of Europe’s most profitable and powerful TV companies

LONDON: British regulators said Comcast had beat 21st Century Fox in a rare auction that allowed both sides to bid for European broadcaster Sky.
After three rounds of bidding behind closed doors, Comcast offered the higher price of 17.28 pounds ($22.58) per share, the equivalent of nearly 30 billion pounds ($39 billion). Fox offered 15.67 ($20.47) per share.
The regulator, the Takeover Panel, set up the auction to reduce uncertainty for Sky. It now gives Sky shareholders a firm bid to evaluate after Fox and Comcast engaged in a series of counteroffers.
Fox had long been trying to acquire the 61 percent of Sky it doesn't already own. Comcast wants to grow its operations in Europe.
Sky is Europe's largest pay-television operator, with 22.5 million customers in seven countries.