at&t Future - Merge with Time Warner?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by Drucifer, Oct 20, 2016.

  1. Drucifer

    Drucifer Well-Known Member

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    AT&T Discussed Idea of Takeover in Time Warner Meetings

    by ED HAMMOND, ALEX SHERMAN, & SCOTT MORITZ; Bloomberg

    Senior executives at AT&T Inc. and Time Warner Inc. have met in recent weeks to discuss various business strategies including a possible merger, according to people familiar with the matter.

    . . . .

    READ MORE
     
  2. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    Can't imagine they'd be allowed to combine Directv and TWC. Uverse wasn't much of a concern to combine with Directv since it was the 4th provider (after Directv, Dish, cable incumbent) in markets were it existed and was probably not sustainable on its own. Combining with TWC would eliminate a strong competitor in many parts of the US.
     
  3. Troch2002

    Troch2002 Member

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    That's interesting...
     
  4. KyL416

    KyL416 Hall Of Fame

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    They're talking about Time Warner Inc, not TWC. Time Warner Cable was split off into a seperate company years ago which was recently purchased by Charter.

    Time Warner Inc. is the company that owns Turner, HBO/Cinemax, Warner Bros (and half of The CW), among other things. (Like Universal Wrestling Corporation, which is still an active subsidiary staffed by lawyers and accountants to handle the remaining contracts and lawsuits related to WCW)
     
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  5. tylorert

    tylorert Active Member

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    Guss A* Has a hole burning in their pocket. What are they going to take over next? Echo*, Comcast, Charter, Mediacom?? OR even CoX?
     
  6. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator

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    None of those. They would have trouble getting past the regulators.

    Time Warner Inc. would be possible ... but would come with a lot of strings attached to make sure that they were giving a fair deal to other companies for carriage.
     
  7. jimmie57

    jimmie57 Hall Of Fame

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    I do not think they will buy Time Warner. It is too big of a deal to make so soon after buying DirecTV. They have enough to work on integrating the 2 companies without adding to it and the HUGE debt.
     
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  8. inkahauts

    inkahauts Well-Known Member

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    After Comcast merged with NBC universal im surprised its taken this long for something like this to come up. It won't surprise me at all if it happens.
     
  9. inkahauts

    inkahauts Well-Known Member

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    Eh maybe maybe not. It could be a long game and they not even begin the merger talks for almost a year at which time the DIRECTV merger will have had a bigger impact on their bottom line.
     
  10. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    Yes of course, I forget there are two Time Warners now! :bang

    It would be hard for the regulators to claim a problem with this when Comcast was allowed to buy NBC, which they should have blocked IMHO. There is already too much concentration in the cable and broadcast industries, but too late that ship has already sailed!
     
  11. jimmie57

    jimmie57 Hall Of Fame

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    CNBC is now reporting that this could be a deal by Monday or soon thereafter.
     
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  12. SamC

    SamC Hall Of Fame

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    This deal seems very much like the Comcast (content delivery company) - NBC Universal (content making company) deal. Assuming (and it is safe to assume) the same kinds of consumer protection assurances are extracted by the government for this deal, then it is a good thing, IMHO. At the end of the day, it is in content maker's best interest to be on every delivery platform. No one really wins when content is not available to a contract dispute. Thus if DirecTV plays hardball with Comcast about how much it (you) should pay for Golf Channel, then Comcast just play hardball back about TCM. It is in both's self-interst to just work out long term fair deals and have all the content each owns.
     
  13. trainman

    trainman Hall Of Fame

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    Except as of right now, we're back to one, with Charter having acquired Time Warner Cable (and being in the process of switching everything to the "Spectrum" brand).
     
  14. KyL416

    KyL416 Hall Of Fame

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    This one should be a lot easier than NBCU/Comcast. The most expensive channels in Time Warner's library are TBS and TNT while premium channels like HBO are priced differently, and they don't have a big 3 network with broadcast channels that are also in markets markets where they also have a RSN and cable system. WB doesn't own any CW affiliates, Time Warner's only broadcast channel is WPCH Atlanta (the former WTBS), and it shouldn't be a problem since that station has been operated by Meredith Corporation (the owner of Atlanta's CBS affiliate) via a LMA since 2011.
     
  15. sabrewulf

    sabrewulf Cool Member

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    AT&T monopoly in the making.
     
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  16. KyL416

    KyL416 Hall Of Fame

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    I think you need to look up the definition of a monopoly

    Unless they merge with Dish, they'll never have a monopoly on satellite.
    Unless they merge with Sprint, Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile they'll never have a monopoly on wireless.
    Unless they merge with Dish, Comcast, Charter, Cox, Altice USA and other smaller providers, along with Frontier, Verizon, Centurylink and Cincinnati Bell, they'll never have a monopoly on subscription television. Because of anti-trust laws that will never come close to happening.

    They'll have to merge with CBS, Viacom, Comcast, Fox, Disney, Scripps, Hearst, AMC Networks, Univision, Starz, Hubbard and Discovery before they get anywhere close to having a monopoly on TV channels.

    They'll have to merge with Comcast, Fox, Charter and MSG Media before they get anywhere close to having a monopoly on RSNs. (Plus they would need to buy out several pro sports teams to get control over independent RSNs like Altitude, NESN and MASN)

    There's an ownership cap on broadcast television on both the market level and overall nationally, so no one will ever have a monopoly on broadcast television. (In this case the only broadcast station involved is an independent station that hasn't even been operated by Time Warner Inc since 2011)

    Telephone is different because of the territories, but this merger has nothing to do with telephone service as Time Warner Inc. doesn't have a landline service or a cable television service. Plus unless you live in an area where there is no cable provider or the local cable company hasn't upgraded the system since the mid-90s, there's usually a telephone option via the cable provider, wireless via someone other than AT&T or a VOIP service like Vonage.


    Time Warner Inc. has the Turner channels, HBO/Cinemax, a movie studio, and one independent broadcast station in Atlanta that they don't even operate anymore. They only have half of The CW, but they don't own any of the affiliates and CBS is the one who actually handles most of the day to day operations. Their most expensive national basic cable channels are TNT and TBS, while premium channels are priced differently where only the people who subscribe are paying for them.
    AT&T/DirecTV's TV channels are limited to Audience (which isn't even offered to other providers), Root Sports (which only affects areas like Houston, Seattle, Colorado, Utah and Pittsburgh where they have the right to show games locally) and a minority interest in GSN (Sony, the majority owner, actually handles the operations of the channel)

    Outside of them both owning some TV channels, there's virtually no overlap when it comes to the operations of AT&T and Time Warner Inc. The merger isn't going to reduce the number of television, telephone, internet and wireless providers or give them control of broadcast stations, RSNs and cable systems within the same market.

    If anything, this will be good for the average worker at Time Warner/Turner. If Fox got their wish and purchased Time Warner, half the people in engineering, marketing, ad sales, publicity and programming at both companies would be out of a job after they merged operations.
     
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  17. sabrewulf

    sabrewulf Cool Member

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    Service providers are dwindling. They want to buy up or merge with everyone out there. Who is to say Dish is next on their list.
     
  18. KyL416

    KyL416 Hall Of Fame

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    The SEC, FTC and FCC.

    Something really drastic would have to happen for them to even consider accepting a merger, like the possibility of one of them going under. But the odds are if that were the case, someone other than AT&T/DirecTV would be a potential buyer of Dish like Sprint or Verizon. (And who knows how Echostar, who actually owns the fleet would play into it) Maybe if DirecTV didn't get acquired by AT&T and it was still a standalone company, they could have re-attempted the Dish/DirecTV merger, especially with the rise of telco providers offering TV service since then as additional competition.


    There's no way AT&T would ever be able to acquire Comcast as is, that alone will prevent a monopoly from happening. Even with the offer to divest some systems, Comcast still wasn't able to acquire Time Warner Cable. Charter was only able to do it because no broadcast stations were involved and they didn't own any cable stations, while Time Warner Cable and Bright House's TV stations were limited to 2 RSNs in LA, partial ownership of SNY, and a bunch of cable only local news channels. In those cases though, Charter, Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House weren't direct competitors. It's very different than actually eliminating competition, which in AT&T's landline footprint would be a competing triple play provider and in return getting a bunch of TV stations in multiple major markets, RSNs in those same markets, and a big 3 broadcast network.
     
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  19. phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

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    Actually, there is a problem evolving.

    Yes, "monopoly" isn't really the word we want to use. What's happening here is that the TV "channels" are being taken over by signal providers, signals including wired (tv and internet), satellite and wireless (internet).

    It began with the Comcast/NBCU merger that gave the cable company Comcast control over the broadcst channels NBC and Telemondo and the cable channels Chiller, Cloo, Syfy, USA Network, Bravo, E!, Esquire Network, Oxygen, Sprout, and Universal HD. It also gave an ISP company Comcast ownership over a number of related and unrelated streaming video services. And Comcast owns and controls the content related production companies and NBC's 30% share of Hulu.

    The proposal, to quote the Wall Street Journal, "would unite AT&T’s portfolio of wireless, broadband and satellite TV services with Time Warner’s entertainment empire." To quote Wikipedia about that empire:

    Further we need to take a long term view of AT&T's plans as DirecTV-the-satellite-TV service isn't likely to be a big piece of the company's future. Here is what I posted in the DirecTV Now thread over in the Streaming TV forum area:

    So I would guess that depending upon what device the app is on you would get, for instance, the same sound quality you get from other apps.



    One can't ignore the big picture of narrowing corporate ownership, power in the media scene, and retail price setters:

    [​IMG]

    When you add AT&T's $231.7 billion to Time Warner's $23.2 billion we have a company worth $254.9 billion, 64% larger than Comcast.

    It is very hard to see what the big picture looks like. This won't be a benign trend for customers. I can envision Disney in a panic buying the newly combined Charter Communications - Time Warner Cable - Bright House Networks.
     
  20. SamC

    SamC Hall Of Fame

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    Excelent work Kyl416.

    Facts are that AT&T has, and will always have, major competitors in every line of business it is in.

    Now, content is a little different, as unlike, say telephone service, it is not fungable. Which is to say, by defination, only AT&T would have HBO to sell. But, the economics of content delivery are such that it is rarely in the best interest of a content provider to have exclusive content. DirecTV, with is natural disadvantages, certainly knows that its greatest advantage is that it has almost "everything". It should know, and it does, that if we ever get to a point where the only way to get "everything" is to subscribe to multiple providers, something only the very wealthy could do, they are toast.

    Not much bad news here for consumers.
     

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