* Yahoo! Inc. said its proposed merger with Verizon Communications Inc. is now expected to close in the second quarter. The merger, which was previously expected to close in the first quarter, is being delayed due to "work required to meet closing conditions," the company said while reporting its fourth-quarter 2016 results.
* Liberty Media Corp. completed the acquisition of motorsports business Formula 1 from a consortium of sellers in a deal with an enterprise value of $8 billion and an equity value of $4.4 billion. Following the deal completion, Liberty Media Group plans to rebrand itself as the Formula One Group, and Formula 1 appointed current Chairman Chase Carey as CEO, while Bernie Ecclestone will serve as chairman emeritus, according to a news release.
Internet & OTT
* Sprint Corp. acquired a 33% stake in Jay Z's music and entertainment platform Tidal for an undisclosed sum. The carrier acquired the stake as part of the company's partnership with Tidal that will allow current and new Sprint customers to access exclusive content from Tidal and its artists, the company said.
* Netflix Inc. picked up worldwide rights to Joe Piscatella's "Joshua: Teenager vs. Superpower" movie. The streaming giant said it will launch the movie on its platform globally for more than 93 million Netflix members in 190 countries later this year.
* Hulu LLC bolstered its content lineup by striking an output licensing deal with Magnolia Pictures. The deal will allow Hulu to exclusively stream films following their theatrical run, the company said.
* Google Inc.'s ad-free subscription service YouTube Red secured rights to stream Nick Cannon's "King of the Dancehall," The Hollywood Reporter reports. In addition to Cannon, the Jamaican dancehall drama also stars Whoopi Goldberg, Busta Rhymes and Louis Gossett Jr.
* Verizon cut 155 employees from its go90 team as part of the consolidation of offices in Los Angeles, San Jose, Calif., and New York, The Hollywood Reporter reports, citing a company spokesman. The job cuts reportedly affected the company's San Jose office, where its engineering team is based.
* Quentin Hardy, deputy tech editor at New York Times Co.'s namesake publication, left the company to join Google Cloud as head of editorial, effective Feb. 6. Hardy announced the departure via a tweet.
* Netflix is close to securing a deal to stream a documentary about wrestler Hulk Hogan's legal dispute with the gossip website Gawker, Deadline.com reports. The company reportedly is set to outbid five other outlets with an offer of nearly $2 million.
* Yoky Matsuoka rejoined Alphabet Inc. as chief technology officer of the company's Nest Labs Inc. unit, Bloomberg News reports. Matsuoka previously left Alphabet to work at Apple Inc. on the company's health technology initiatives.
The day ahead
Early morning futures indicators pointed to a higher opening for the U.S. market.
In Asia, the Hang Seng rose 0.22% to 22,949.86, while the Nikkei 225 fell 0.55% to 18,787.99.
In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 gained 0.10% to 7,158.41, and the Euronext 100 climbed 0.07% to 930.81.
On the macro front
The Redbook index, the PMI manufacturing index flash, the existing home sales report and the Richmond Fed manufacturing index are due out today.
Capitol Connection: Pai a 'known quantity,' a 'good choice' to lead FCC: Legal and industry experts weigh in on the selection of Republican Commissioner Ajit Pai as the next FCC chairman.
M&A Replay: Google acquires Twitter unit; Microsoft buys Simplygon: S&P Global Market Intelligence provides a wrap-up of U.S. media and communications deal announcements and completions from Jan. 16 to Jan. 20.
M&A Replay: European deals through Jan. 20: Microsoft, Deutsche Telekom, Ericsson: S&P Global Market Intelligence provides a wrap-up of European media and communications deal announcements, completions and updates from Jan. 16 to Jan. 20.
Q&A: Iflix CEO on conquering piracy, cultural barriers in Asia's OTT market: S&P Global Market Intelligence spoke to Mark Britt, co-founder and group CEO of Malaysia-based iflix, about the over-the-top service's strategy behind its rapid growth across Asia.
Indonesia's tax dispute with Google continues; Australia to sell off spectrum: In this biweekly Asia-Pacific Regulatory Spotlight feature, S&P Global Market Intelligence provides a roundup of significant recent regulatory events in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Daily Dose Asia-Pacific: China targets VPNs; Samsung finds battery defects caused Note 7 fires: China is cracking down on internet connections that bypass state restrictions, while Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.'s investigation of its Galaxy Note 7 found that a defect in the design of the batteries and manufacturing issues led to overheating and fires in the devices.
The Daily Dose Europe: AMC buys Nordic Cinema; Sky invests in UK indies: AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. agreed to buy Stockholm-based Nordic Cinema for 8.25 billion Swedish kronor, while Sky plc announced investments in British indies True North and Chrysalis Vision.
Economics of Advertising: Pre-earnings ratings roundup: With earnings season around the corner for the cable network owners, we examined the quarterly ratings and household delivery at the basic cable networks rated by Nielsen.
Global Multichannel: Global multichannel video market reached 1 billion subs milestone in 2016, 60% penetration: The global multichannel market surpassed the 1 billion subscriber mark at the end of 2016 as 60% of households paid for some form of traditional subscription video service.
Broadcast Investor: ATSC 3.0 standard expected to be approved by spring as challenges await: ATSC 3.0 may take several more years to fully deploy in the U.S., but the technology surrounding the standard and the business models built to use it are becoming priorities for broadcasters.
Economics of TV & Film: Netflix international subs catching up to domestic count: The holidays were indeed happy for Netflix as the company reported it had exceeded its forecasts for domestic and international subscriber additions in the last quarter of 2016.
Technology: Technology Quarterly Industry Presentation, Q4'16: SNL Kagan's latest quarterly presentation report examining industry trends and data for the technology sector.
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