January 24, 2006

Disney Board Okays Takeover Offer to Pixar

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The board of Walt Disney Co. has authorized Chief Executive Robert Iger to make an offer to buy Pixar Animation Studios Inc. and is expected to do so by Tuesday, a source familiar with the matter said late on Monday.

Pixar's board is expected to consider the offer on Tuesday as well, said the source, who did not disclose financial terms.

Pixar shares closed at $58.27 on Monday on Nasdaq, putting its market value at just under $7 billion. The shares have risen about 12 percent in the last month, partly on speculation that Disney would buy the computer animation company behind such hits as "Toy Story," "Finding Nemo" and "The Incredibles."

The Wall Street Journal has reported that Disney is considering an all-stock offer, which would make Pixar Chief Executive Steve Jobs its largest individual shareholder.

The Journal reported late on Monday that the offer under consideration would give Jobs, who has a controlling stake in Pixar, a set on the Disney board.

Disney shares closed 0.78 percent lower at $25.52.