AT&T Buys HBO & Time Warner for $80 Billion

HBO1AT&T Inc. has reached an agreement to buy Time Warner who owns channels like HBO for between $105 and $110 a share, with a deal likely to be announced as soon as Saturday evening, according to people familiar with the plans. Time Warner owns HBO, Warner Bros, Turner Broadcasting System, Inc that gives them access to channels like TBS, CNN, and TNT including. Time Warner also owns part of Hulu and NBA TV.

“There’s a lot that’s attractive about Time Warner,” media industry veteran Peter Chernin, who runs an online video joint venture with AT&T, said in an interview Thursday on CNBC. “I think they’re both great companies.” He said he didn’t know anything about a deal.

“With the pending launch of the DirecTV Now OTT app, it might make sense to move onto content ownership, but Time-Warner is an awfully big first step into the content world,” said John Butler, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence, in an e-mail.

According to the WSJ the boards of the two companies are meeting on Saturday to approve the transaction. The deal is half cash and half stock, according to one of the people and according to source this is a done deal.

The Wall Street Journal had reported earlier on Friday that the AT&T and Time Warner were engaged in advanced talks and a cash-and-stock deal could come as soon as this weekend. Others have said the deal could be done as soon as sometime next week.

Time Warner is not TWC as they sold off their cable operation several years ago. TWC is now owned by Charter.

This deal is likely to face strict oversight and could face some legal challenges.

Source: WSJ

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  • Norman

    Wow. Let’s see what happens with regulators, but wow.

    • Ben M

      Wow is right. As a cord cutter I see this as bad news.

      On another note, AT&T way overpaid. Current Time Warner Stock price is $82 (jumped $9 on Friday so it was $73 on Thursday). They are paying a huge premium.

  • Jim Carter

    The Time Warner cable franchise in Louisville switched to Charter a few months (not years) ago. Yes…the sale talk started years ago, but the approval took forever.

  • I was confused for a second there because of the Charter purchase. Didn’t realize Time Warner isn’t TWC anymore.