AT&T and Discovery merges to create autonomous global entertainment and media business

Telecommunications giant AT&T, which also owns HBO and Warner Bros., and Discovery, which owns the television network of the same name, have announced a merger. The transaction, during which AT&T will receive $ 43 billion, will create an “autonomous global entertainment and media business.”

On one hand, will be one of the most powerful studios in Hollywood, the CNN news network, sports programs, and Discovery show on home, culinary, nature, and popular science topics. The new company will be led by current Discovery CEO David Zaslav.

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The move marks the end of AT&T’s ambitious plan to create a powerful telecommunications and media company through a series of deals, including 2015 $ 68 billion purchase of DirecTV satellite television service and the 2018 acquisition of US media conglomerate Time Warner for $ 108.7 billion.

AT&T said it is using the proceeds from the tax-free spin-off of its media assets to partially pay off a debt that exceeds $ 160 billion. The value of the enterprises of the newly merged company will exceed $ 120 billion. Its name will be announced next week.

Under the terms of the agreement, AT&T shareholders will own 71% of the holding’s shares, Discovery shareholders – the remaining 29%. There are no plans to sell any assets. The deal is expected to close in mid-2022, following Discovery shareholder approval and regulatory approval.


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