He sees the writing on the wall. I heard a great story about him. He met with the CEO of Netflix back in the day, and the CEO was asking for all the Fox media to stream on his service. He shares revenue predictions, growth plans, explained that this was the future. At the end of the lunch Rupert said he believed every word. But rather than give his stuff to Netflix, he’d just make his own streaming service and eliminate Netflix.
Imagine you’re the CEO of Netflix in that moment.
The balls he had were amazing. He responded that Rupert can go right ahead, but it’d be one of a hundred business ventures Fox would be perusing. Whereas all Netflix would be focused on was streaming. And because of that Netflix would win. Rupert smiled and left.
Three hours later the CEO got a call. Rupert had thought about it and agreed with his take. And he offered him the Fox media he wanted.
All this is to say Rupert is really really smart. He’s been portrayed as a conservative monster or a doddering fool but he’s as smart as they come. And he sees the streaming wars coming, the entertainment wars coming. And understand that there’s only going to be a few winners and Fox likely won’t be one of them. So he’s selling to leverage the asset into something different and new.