AT&T Exploring Part Ways With DirecTV?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by msglsmo, Sep 18, 2019.

  1. msglsmo

    msglsmo Member

    Dec 27, 2015
    Kansas City, MO
  2. SledgeHammer

    SledgeHammer Icon

    Dec 28, 2007
    AWESOME NEWS!! AT&T sucks. Maybe now the new CEO won't let the Satellites drop out of the sky as some folks on here claim will be happening next week ;).
    BigRedFan likes this.
  3. Steady Teddy

    Steady Teddy Godfather

    Jan 23, 2007
    Because Just OK Is Not OK
  4. MysteryMan

    MysteryMan Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

    May 17, 2010
    Only 1 1/2 paragraphs are available in that link. If you want to read the whole article you have to subscribe WSJ News.
  5. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

    Feb 14, 2013
    If they actually do this I wonder how many billions they'd lose on it? It was making around $4 billion a year when they bought it, so if you figure they have it for five years they'd need to get nearly $50 billion (I believe the price ended up at $69 billion at the stock price when it became official and including assumed debt) to break even. Anyone believe they'd get even half that, given the rate at which it has been shedding subscribers of late?

    I wonder if they would keep AT&T TV / TV Now or include them in the sale? It doesn't make much sense for them to keep them, since they'd have the same problem they did with Uverse TV of too small a scale to get good deals when they have to renew.

    If they end up losing $20 billion on the transaction I don't see how any the decision makers in the C suite or board end up keeping their jobs.
    BigRedFan likes this.
  6. nuspieds

    nuspieds Legend

    Aug 9, 2008
  7. jw_rally

    jw_rally Active Member

    Jul 28, 2014
    Unfortunately AT&T will not part ways before my scheduled October 5 cancellation date after 17 years of having DIRECTV service.
  8. DirectMan

    DirectMan AllStar

    Jul 14, 2007
    I have predicted that if it happens it will be a spinoff to shareholders of DTV after ATT has unloaded a ton of debt on the new company. A hookup with Dish is unlikely before the spinoff as it would delay the transaction. This is the best possible outcome for subscribers like you and me. Hopefully they would rehire a bunch of the former execs.
    BigRedFan likes this.
  9. BigRedFan

    BigRedFan Legend

    Mar 28, 2010
    South Florida
    Best news ever !!!

    I hope they fast-track this sale so we can quickly forget the dark age of AT&T owning DirecTV.
    BigJ52 likes this.
  10. Bob Coxner

    Bob Coxner Icon

    Dec 28, 2005
    AT&T reportedly considers offloading its DirecTV satellite unit

    Great news but, and there's always a but, if AT&T saddles the spinoff with a mountain of debt then things could actually get worse. As hard to believe as that is. I don't see a merger with Dish and if they did we might look fondly on the AT&T days. Dish is a nightmare for consumers.
  11. CraigerM

    CraigerM Well-Known Member

    Apr 15, 2014
    St. Louis
    They’re not selling it to Dish Network. How could they sell it now when they don’t have the customer base to negotiate when the channel contracts are up? Unless be the time they are up they think they would have the customers by then? I also think it could pass the regulators with all internet streaming providers.

    AT&T, Dish not in talks over DirecTV deal: source - Reuters
  12. SledgeHammer

    SledgeHammer Icon

    Dec 28, 2007
    As much as the several vocal cord cutters on DBSTalk would you to believe, the sky is not in fact falling. Live TV streaming is around 2.5M *unique* customers based on the customer counts of the big ones, since you know YASS! you gotta have 10 streaming providers to get all your channels, so people subscribe to multiple ones.

    The head honcho is pro-business...

    I've always predicted Dish and DirecTV would merge.
  13. techguy88

    techguy88 Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2015
    Actually it could pass now in the same vein that Sirius and XM were allowed to merge despite being the only two satellite radio providers. If AT&T is really serious about selling DirecTV and Dish is serious about buying DirecTV from AT&T then both sides can use Sirius XM as an example and state the only way for satellite television could survive is if Dish buys DirecTV from AT&T as DirecTV and Dish can't survive on their own in a heavily competitive pay television environment. Not to mention DOJ didn't want AT&T to have both DirecTV and WarnerMedia anyway so I'm sure they will jump at the opportunity to separate DirecTV and WarerMedia.

    For Dish the deal would be a good thing as long as it isn't saddled with debt it would place them as the #1 MVPD however AT&T would be severely hampered by a sale of D* as they would lose bargaining power in negotiations. Unless AT&T retains a minority ownership in the combine company so their video services can be included in negotiations.
    Rich likes this.
  14. CraigerM

    CraigerM Well-Known Member

    Apr 15, 2014
    St. Louis
    If DTV and Dish were to merge hypothetically how would it work? Would they put the Dish OS with their channel lineup and channel numbers on the DTV box’s or vice versa? Or would they switch a Dish customers to DTV or vice versa? Or would Dish just operate DTV as a separate service but under their billing?
  15. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator

    Apr 17, 2003
    See previous threads. If this wasn't a new story from The Washington Post it wouldn't be worth commenting on at all.
  16. inkahauts

    inkahauts Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2006
    Los Angeles times has it too and after reading it att is not exploring this beyond what they are bound to because an activist stock holder wants it and gave them a plan and he owns billions of dollars worth of shares. I won’t hold my breath.

    Att in general is screwed till they get rid of a guy who was a bean counter (he was their cfo) as it’s CEO and bring in someone who understands who things that can be physically counted affect the bottom line. The current guy finest understand any of that at all...

    I know someone whom works for att and he also mentioned that lawsuit about fake accounts is absolutely spot in. People in the stores where just adding DIRECTV now to people’s wireless accounts while they where in the stores upgrading cell phones and what have you and telling them it’s just a free trial cancel it in seven days. And they added it before telling people they where going to so that they could hit sales numbers. And of course some managers where in on it. But that’s just corrupt sales practices imho pushed by bean counter agendas.
  17. bills976

    bills976 Godfather/Supporter

    Jun 30, 2002
    I disagree. This is a new development on AT&T's part that's worth discussion - they've gone from activist investor demanding changes, to public calls for Stephenson to admit this is a failure, to this article where they look like they are trying to dump the service altogether. Stephenson and the death star were pretty clear at the time of the purchase that they were using the DirecTV acquisition as a way to enter the video market beyond uverse. They thought they could use DirecTV's pre-existing programming agreements to position themselves as market leaders.

    Hindsight has shown this was doomed to fail from the start. AT&T is an industry behemoth that has a questionable customer service record. They purchased a business on the tail-end of an S-curve with a fairly solid customer service reputation. Not surprisingly, since AT&T completed the acquisition, DirecTV customer satisfaction has tanked. When combined with the industry trend towards streaming and away from traditional cable and satellite, it spelled trouble for the legacy DirecTV business which has been losing customers as a result of those (and other) factors.

    This would have all been OK had their streaming service been successful, but it hasn't because DirecTV Now's software is just plain unreliable. I subscribed to the service for six months or so last year, after getting in on the Apple TV deal. I can't tell you the number of times the stream would just quit, recordings wouldn't play back, error codes would get thrown when booting the app... it was really bad, and from reading the DirecTV Now Reddit sub, it seems like it's just as bad as it was. I have had maybe one or two hiccups a month with Hulu over the past year and change.

    AT&T tried to pivot the streaming plan around going after "good" subscribers willing to stick with the service. This would have worked if the bill of goods they were selling could be counted on as a premium product that was superior in some way to competitors. But it isn't - Hulu and Google offer significantly higher levels of reliability at comparable or lower prices.

    I think this is the right move for AT&T, although it leaves DirecTV in a lurch. I think the best case scenario for the customer base is an acquisition by E* and Charlie, but I suspect AT&T is going to try to spin them off instead given the previous regulatory hurdles around such a purchase.

    This will make an excellent Harvard Business School case study at some point.
    blueoyster likes this.
  18. Richjr42

    Richjr42 New Member

    Nov 10, 2012
  19. DirectMan

    DirectMan AllStar

    Jul 14, 2007
    The WSJ article also mentions that the earliest the spinoff could happen is mid 2020 because that would be five years after the acquisition and that holding period is necessary so that it would not be taxable to ATT shareholders.
    Rich likes this.
  20. techguy88

    techguy88 Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2015
    I'm not sure but I would be interested to see if Dish ever does acquire D* how they would integrate D*'s fleet of satellites with their Eastern Arc and Western Arc.

    Yeah the lawsuit is pretty damming from what I've heard from friends that used to work (and some that still do) for the local O&O call center AT&T acquired from D* the whole fake account ordeal was not pretty from what I've heard.
    APB101 and Rich like this.

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