AT&T has reached a deal to acquire Time Warner for more than $85 billion, a blockbuster deal that fuses a mobile giant with an entertainment conglomerate, carrying with it the potential to reshape the media landscape.
The two companies on Saturday jointly announced the deal, unanimously approved by both boards, that will see the mobile company pay $107.50 per share in a cash and stock transaction. The deal represents a marriage of Time Warner’s limitless movie and television empire with AT&T’s 315 million wireless subscribers.
“It’s a great fit, and it creates immediate and long-term value for our shareholders,” AT&T chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson said in a statement.
The deal, however, faces a stiff political and regulatory test. The populist winds buffeting Washington mean that legislators may not approve of another multi-billion corporate tie-up. Already, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said in a speech that under a potential GOP White House, his administration would not approve the deal.
Why AT&T wants Time Warner
The move, announced Saturday evening, will help AT&T expand beyond wireless and Internet service into programming. Time Warner includes everything from “Game of Thrones,” on HBO, to “Anderson Cooper 360,” on CNN, to “The Big Bang Theory,” produced by Warner Bros., to March Madness basketball games, aired by several Turner cable channels.
With HBO and CNN on one side of the company, and wireless on the other side, AT&T will have more power to shape the future of media.
AT&T said in its announcement that “the future of mobile is video, and the future of video is mobile.”
The deal will also keep Time Warner out of the hands of AT&T’s huge rivals, including Verizon, Comcast, and Apple. Bewkes will remain Time Warner CEO during the regulatory review. Afterward, he’ll stay on to “ensure a smooth transition,” he told reporters.
What this means for Warner Bros., DC Films, and DC Comics remains to be seen. More than likely, any changes that take place behind the scenes will be imperceptible to fans on the outside, and the merger isn’t likely to go through until at least 2017.
All I really care for are the DCEU movies really, I hope the only way it affects them is positive or none at all. What about you?
Source : WSJ