Sky investors back reappointment of chairman James Murdoch

CMA details scope of Fox-Sky investigation in issues statement

That included support from largest shareholder Fox, which controls a voting stake of 37.19 percent in Sky.

Some institutional shareholders had criticized Murdoch's appointment as chairman, arguing that could pose a conflict of interest given his role as CEO of Sky's largest shareholder.

Some investor groups had expressed unease over him serving longer, in light of James being also chief executive of 21st Century Fox - which is seeking to buy the 61 percent of Sky it does not already own.

"The board notes the significant vote against. the Directors' Remuneration Report, and. the re-election of James Murdoch, and will continue to engage with shareholders to understand their views as part of its ongoing programme of engagement", the company said on Thursday.

More than 28% of shareholders voted against Mr Murdoch's comeback as chairman last year, four years after he stood down from the position in the wake of the phone-hacking scandal at the News of the World.

Fox's US$15 billion bid for Sky is now with United Kingdom competition watchdogs.

The shareholder, Hugh Lawson, said: "I think the board lacks independence".

The British government referred Fox's $15 billion (11.38 billion pounds) bid for a detailed investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) last month to assess the Murdoch family's commitment to British broadcasting standards and its influence in the media. In late 2014, after BSkyB acquired Fox's Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland, the bigger company changed its name to Sky.

Earlier, Sky reported what were regarded by City analysts as strong results for the first three months of its financial year.

Ofcom chief executive Sharon White has said she is "absolutely confident" that the broadcasting regulator was right in ruling that the planned purchase of Sky by Rupert Murdoch's 21 Century Fox would not undermine its broadcasting standards.

Jeremy Darroch, Group Chief Executive, said that the good revenue growth and excellent profit growth was achieved against the backdrop of pressure on consumer spending and lower spend on United Kingdom television advertising.

Game of Thrones helped Sky increase customer numbers by 51 per cent in the first quarter, as revenue and earnings also grew.

According to the statement it released today, European production business is a key priority for growth and the company will be investing 25% more in Sky Originals programming across its territories this year.

Shares in 21st Century Fox were flat at $25.50 in light-volume trading.

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