AT&T and Time Warner Reportedly Discussing ‘Possible Merger’

Senior executives at AT&T and Time Warner met in recent weeks to discuss various business strategies, reports Bloomberg. Citing sources familiar with the matter, the outlet says that the talks are informal at this point, and neither side has hired a financial adviser, but the discussions have included the possibility of a merger.

Time Warner Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bewkes is a willing seller, said one of the people, if he gets an offer he thinks is fair. Bewkes and his board rejected an $85-a-share approach in 2014 from Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox Inc., which valued Time Warner at more than $75 billion.
AT&T Chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson is looking to add more content and original programming to his Dallas-based telecommunications company, said another person familiar with the matter.
 As for AT&T, the goal would be to bolster its own original content, as well as services. The carrier picked up DirecTV not too long ago, and has already managed to not only bundle those services in with its own cellular plans, but also expand on original content, including movies and TV shows.

The talks are reportedly preliminary right now, which makes sense, considering AT&T does not have the cash on hand to buy Time Warner Inc. with exclusively cash. Whatever the talks consist of right now, AT&T’s goal, and Time Warner Inc.’s best laid plans, are probably still a ways away.


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