The AT&T-owned satellite operator says it offers “other, more popular” financial news networks. Bloomberg was also dropped from DirecTV Stream and Uverse.
AT&T no longer owns DirecTV but it has agreed to pay up to $2.1 billion for losses resulting from its NFL Sunday Ticket contract. AT&T agreed to spin off its pay TV businesses to TPG in a deal valued at $15 billion in February. The deal closed in August. In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, AT&T described how it was treating some aspects of the separation from a financial and accounting perspective.
The two legacy satellite TV operators face an existential crisis that even a merger won’t fix.
AT&T has completed the spinoff of DirecTV into a new entity part-owned by private equity firm TPG, capping a costly six-year adventure in the satellite TV business. The new entity, whose financials will no longer be included on the AT&T balance sheet, unveiled new branding and a new home for its internet-delivered TV packages. Later this month, DirecTV Stream will become the umbrella for streaming offerings like the one formerly known as AT&T TV Now (originally DirecTV Now).
AT&T is selling $6.2 billion worth of DirecTV Holdings debt in order to finance the spinoff of its linear pay TV assets. The telecom is selling $3.1 billion of six-year secured bonds (aka junk bonds) that are set to price Thursday and may yield around 6% to 6.5%.
The FCC has approved AT&T’s spin-off of its traditional video distribution business as it moves toward streaming (HBO Max) as its video play of choice, citing the parties’ undisputed claim that the New DirecTV company that will result would be stronger because it could focus on traditional video. The FCC will not require the New DirecTV to deliver local TV station signals to the 12 smallest markets, as the broadcast affiliate associations had asked. It also declined to apply any program carriage conditions on the deal.
No matter how you look at it, first quarter was another disaster for traditional cable and satellite. Leading the pack was DirecTV with a loss of 620,000 subscribers. As first reported by Mike Farrell in Multichannel News, the loss caused Bernstein Media analyst Peter Supino to proclaim: “If DirecTV continues to bleed subs at its […]
Networks, mobile truck companies and tech vendors agree the pandemic will impact HDR and UHD production through this year through a combination of equipment availability, complex new remote workflows and financial constraints.
AT&T will spin off its video business including DirecTV into a new company in a deal with TPG, which acquired 30% of the new company. The agreement values the forthcoming company, known as New DirecTV, at $16.25 billion. Under the terms of the transaction, New DirecTV will be jointly governed by a board with two representatives from each of AT&T and TPG, as well as a fifth seat for the CEO, which at closing will be Bill Morrow, CEO of AT&T’s U.S. video unit. Following the close of the transaction, AT&T will own 70% of the common equity and TPG will own 30%.
AT&T is nearing a $15 billion deal to sell a substantial minority stake in its DirecTV, AT&T TV Now and U-Verse business to private equity firm TPG, according to people familiar with the matter. A deal could be announced as soon as this week, said the people, who asked not to be named because the discussions are private.
AT&T’s TV services, including DirecTV, U-verse and AT&T TV, this morning lost roughly 25 stations in 20 markets due to a fee fight with Cox Media Group, and its owner, Apollo Global Management.
DirecTV and AT&T TV could lose 14 stations next Tuesday due to a carriage dispute with Cox Media Group which manages the stations. (The fee fight also affects U-verse in the markets it serves.)
Private equity firm TPG has entered into exclusive talks to acquire a minority stake in AT&T’s satellite TV division, DirecTV, in a deal that would allow the U.S. wireless carrier to trim its net debt of close to $150 billion, people familiar with the matter say.
AT&T should take the lowball offer, streamline its business and learn from its mistakes.
AT&T’s attempt to unload DirecTV has been thrown into doubt, as the telecom giant has signaled it’s unhappy with the offers it has received for the struggling satellite TV service. Earlier this month, AT&T pushed back a deadline for final bids for DirecTV into January — and told prospective bidders it may cancel the auction altogether if it doesn’t get better offers, according to sources close to the situation.
AT&T received bids for its DirecTV unit valuing the satellite TV service at more than $15 billion including debt, with Michael Klein’s blank-check company among the bidders.
Approximately 60 Tegna television stations were dropped after carriage negotiations failed to reach a new contract Tuesday evening. The old contract between the station group and the satellite and cable provider expired last month and was extended until 7 p.m. ET Tuesday.
The group broadcaster grants a retrans extension to Dec. 1 as talks continue.
A blank-check company backed by former Citigroup Inc. rainmaker Michael Klein is among the parties interested in buying a stake in AT&T Inc.’s DirecTV satellite-television business, according to people with knowledge of the matter. Churchill Capital Corp. IV, which raised $2.07 billion in July, is working with advisers on a potential bid for the asset, the people said, asking not to be identified because the discussions are private.
AT&T is considering selling significant minority stake in DirecTV, AT&T Now and U-Verse pay-TV operations. Final bids are due in early December, sources say. A deal could value DirecTV at less than $15 billion after AT&T acquired it for $67 billion plus debt about five years ago.
Charlie Ergen’s dream of merging his Dish Network with AT&T’s DirecTV has been squashed by the Department of Justice — yet again. Regulators with the DOJ’s antitrust division recently informed executives of AT&T that a marriage between DirecTV and Dish would likely have to wait until faster 5G wireless service is more widely available in rural markets, two sources close to the situation said.
When AT&T announced that it would acquire DirecTV in 2014, it was initially billed as a way to create “a unique new competitor with unprecedented capabilities in mobility, video and broadband services.” However, that acquisition hasn’t played out well. AT&T spent $67.1 billion in total, including absorbing DirecTV’s net debt load, while the transaction pegged DirecTV’s equity value at $48.5 billion.
AT&T is pressing ahead with an auction of DirecTV — and it’s shaping up to be a fire sale. The telecom giant last week invited a handful of suitors into the second round of an auction of the struggling satellite-TV provider, even though first-round bids had valued DirecTV at well below $20 billion.
AT&T never had a clear plan to integrate DirecTV into its overall strategy, and instead piddled away its brand and showed an utter failure of leadership in the process.
DirecTV this week has quietly dropped its cheapest advertised programming package, effectively raising the entry price for new subscribers by $5 a month. (The increase does not affect existing customers.) The satcaster used to offer a “Select” plan for new customers for $59.99 a month for the first year of a two-year agreement. However, the Select package is no longer available as an option for new customers at DirecTV’s website or via the 800-line customer service department. Instead, the lowest-priced plan is now “Entertainment,” which offers 160 channels for $64.99 a month.
Black News Channel has launched on satellite TV platform DirecTV, which said it also will launch Cleo TV before the end of the year to greater diversify its program offerings.
AT&T is taking a fresh look at its DirecTV business, according to people familiar with the matter, exploring a deal for a satellite-TV service wounded by cord cutting.
DirecTV has quietly begun selling a streaming version of the NFL Sunday Ticket to any non-DirecTV subscriber in 29 select markets. The 29 markets include the home cities for 26 of the 32 NFL teams.
Combining the two fading satellite TV operations isn’t a matter of if but only when, Dish Network Chairman Charlie Ergen says.