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Comcast CEO Speed-Dates With Apple, Google Chiefs in Sun Valley

Nabila Ahmed
Brian Roberts Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

It’s been a busy couple of days for Comcast Corp. Chief Executive Officer Brian Roberts at Sun Valley.

Roberts, who’s locked in a multibillion-dollar battle with Walt Disney Co. to acquire assets from 21st Century Fox Inc., has been racking up facetime at the annual Allen & Co. gathering, meeting Apple Inc.’s Tim Cook and Eddy Cue, Google’s Sundar Pichai and SoftBank Group Corp.’s Vision Fund chief Rajeev Misra all in the space of two days.

Comcast is fighting a trans-continental battle with Disney for properties including British broadcaster Sky Plc., Star India and Fox’s movie studios. As the company weighs a higher bid for the Fox assets, it has been casting around for partners who can help top Disney’s $71.3 billion offer, people familiar with the matter have said. An approach to Amazon.com Inc. last year proved fruitless.

A representative for Comcast declined to comment.

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The Apple executives summed up the mood at the invitation-only media and tech conference, joking that the gathering is basically for “speed-dating.”

Comcast’s pursuit of Fox has been one of the biggest topics of discussion at the gathering, where Fox’s Rupert Murdoch and Disney’s Bob Iger are also in attendance. The largest U.S. cable company increased its separate offer for Sky to 26 billion pounds ($34 billion) late Wednesday, putting the ball back in Murdoch’s court.

Read more: All eyes on Disney-Comcast battle

The Vision Fund’s Misra, who oversees almost $100 billion at the biggest technology fund in the world, said he met with Roberts on Wednesday but wouldn’t elaborate on what was discussed.

“He doesn’t need my money!” Misra said.

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