News Corp officially splits in two

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Media captionNews Corp is being split into two divisions; broadcasting and publishing

Rupert Murdoch's media empire, News Corporation, has officially split into two separate companies.

The corporation's more profitable entertainment arm, which includes a Hollywood film studio, is being spun off under the name 21st Century Fox.

The publishing arm, which includes the Sun and the Times in the UK, and the Wall Street Journal and the New York Post, will retain the News Corp name.

Mr Murdoch says the move will unlock value for shareholders.

Its publishing wing made a $2.1bn (£1.3bn) loss in the last financial year.

Rebecca Lieb, analyst at the Altimeter Group in New York, told the BBC: "The lagging revenues of the print properties are dragging down the overall profitability of News Corp.

"While there are certainly efforts afoot to change print, to revamp print, to find new monetisation streams for print - those endeavours certainly aren't going as fast or as nimbly as perhaps the shareholders might hope."

The move is also expected to protect the TV and film brands from the phone-hacking scandal surrounding its British newspapers, and which led to the closure of the News of the World in July 2011.

Mr Murdoch announced plans to separate the businesses last year and News Corp shareholders approved the split earlier this month.

Rupert Murdoch will serve as chairman and chief executive of 21st Century Fox, as well as executive chairman of News Corp, while sons James and Lachlan will also sit on the boards of both companies.

The chief executive of the News Corp publishing business will be Robert Thomson, a former editor of the Times, managing editor of the Wall Street Journal and editor-in-chief of Dow Jones.

The two companies will start trading separately in New York on 1 July, under the tickers NWSA and FOXA.

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