View Full Version : AT&T agrees to buy DirecTV in $48.5B deal



Achilleslastand
05-18-2014, 05:39 PM
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/t-agrees-buy-directv-48-5b-deal-214622889--finance.html

DALLAS (AP) AT&T Inc. on Sunday agreed to buy satellite TV provider DirecTV for $48.5 billion, or $95 per share, a move that gives telecommunications company a larger base of video subscribers and increases its ability to compete against rivals.

AT&T currently offers a high-speed Internet plan in a bundle with DirecTV television service. The acquisition would help it further reap the benefits of that alliance. AT&T could also use the deal to improve its Internet service by pushing its existing U-verse TV subscribers into DirecTV's video-over-satellite service, freeing up bandwidth on its telecommunications network.

"This is a unique opportunity that will redefine the video entertainment industry and create a company able to offer new bundles and deliver content to consumers across multiple screens - mobile devices, TVs, laptops, cars and even airplanes," AT&T's Chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson said in a statement.

With 5.7 million U-verse TV customers and 20.3 million DirecTV customers in the U.S., the combined AT&T-DirecTV would serve 26 million. That would make it the second-largest pay TV operator behind a combined Comcast-Time Warner Cable, which would serve 30 million under a $45 billion merger proposed in February

Zuplar
05-18-2014, 06:52 PM
I currently have DirecTV and ATT cell phones. Maybe I can get a discount once it goes through.

Dennis Heaton
05-18-2014, 07:10 PM
Next...Cox Communications/Enterprises!

bradh
05-18-2014, 07:20 PM
Do not like this at all, if AT&T infects DirecTV's awesome customer service I'll be pissssssed.

Snowman
05-18-2014, 07:24 PM
Do not like this at all, if AT&T infects DirecTV's awesome customer service I'll be pissssssed.

That and some other cuts on the administrative side is how deals like this make money though.

Pete
05-18-2014, 07:56 PM
I wonder if this will pass anti-trust scrutiny.

bluedogok
05-18-2014, 08:01 PM
Do not like this at all, if AT&T infects DirecTV's awesome customer service I'll be pissssssed.
I agree...

Prunepicker
05-18-2014, 08:22 PM
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/t-agrees-buy-directv-48-5b-deal-214622889--finance.html (http://finance.yahoo.com/news/t-agrees-buy-directv-48-5b-deal-214622889--finance.html)

DALLAS (AP) AT&T Inc. on Sunday agreed to buy satellite TV provider
DirecTV for $48.5 billion, or $95 per share, a move that gives
telecommunications company a larger base of video subscribers and increases
its ability to compete against rivals.
I almost posted this. Don't know what to think. The only TV I pay for is
Netflix streaming and MLB.TV.

Will this bring the cost of cable or tv down?

Prunepicker
05-18-2014, 08:23 PM
I wonder if this will pass anti-trust scrutiny.
I'm thinking that the market is still wide open, but I really don't know.

Prunepicker
05-18-2014, 08:26 PM
Do not like this at all, if AT&T infects DirecTV's awesome customer service
I'll be pissssssed.
I remember when ATT had the absolutely worst customer care in the the
business. I believe they decided to change that a few years ago. At least
that's been my experience with my iPhone service. But there was a time
that I honestly believe they required a failed knowledge of the English
language.

bradh
05-18-2014, 08:29 PM
They may have changed something, because the kids they send out selling Uverse door to door have the response to "AT&T's customer services sucks" memorized to a T. "Blah blah JD Power & Associates blah blah."

Point is, DTV's is awesome, I just hope it doesn't change.

Pete
05-18-2014, 08:34 PM
I have several friends that work for DirecTV -- their HQ is right next to the airport here in Los Angeles.

They all love working there and often repeat that they position themselves as a luxury brand. Price matters, but they prefer to charge a bit more and then provide great service. The basically let Dish have all the value shoppers.

Will be very interesting to see how AT&T influences this approach.

soonerguru
05-18-2014, 10:04 PM
I have several friends that work for DirecTV -- their HQ is right next to the airport here in Los Angeles.

They all love working there and often repeat that they position themselves as a luxury brand. Price matters, but they prefer to charge a bit more and then provide great service. The basically let Dish have all the value shoppers.

Will be very interesting to see how AT&T influences this approach.

Well this sucks. AT&T is no bueno.

Just the facts
05-18-2014, 10:15 PM
As a long time DirecTV customer (nearly 15 years), being bought by ATT is the only thing that could make me want to switch to something else. I hope ATT doesn't screw things up. In the mean time, I already have one eye on a Roku III so it wouldn't take much to push me into it.

MWCGuy
05-18-2014, 11:51 PM
I have several friends that work for DirecTV -- their HQ is right next to the airport here in Los Angeles.

They all love working there and often repeat that they position themselves as a luxury brand. Price matters, but they prefer to charge a bit more and then provide great service. The basically let Dish have all the value shoppers.

Will be very interesting to see how AT&T influences this approach.

I get a feeling many of those folks will be moving to Texas or face lay off. My understanding is AT&T usually downsizes and consolidates the purchased company into AT&T operations. In order for the deal to go through the fed will probably make them shed some of Direct TV's customers or exit certain markets so the little cable companies don't suffer from their gain of market share.

Who will really get screwed on this is the large cable providers because now AT&T will be a powerhouse for pay TV. I have feeling AT&T may be the first to offer ala carte pricing or package pricing where you pick the channels.

Prunepicker
05-18-2014, 11:58 PM
I have MLB.TV. I can't think of reason for ATT or Dish. Hey, I haven't
seen a commercial. How great is that? I've also watched every Dodger
home game.

Between the Dodger games I have Netflix streaming. No commercials.

There's nothing better than commercial free TV. Especially if it's Baseball.

Snowman
05-19-2014, 12:04 AM
Who will really get screwed on this is the large cable providers because now AT&T will be a powerhouse for pay TV. I have feeling AT&T may be the first to offer ala carte pricing or package pricing where you pick the channels.

AT&T is not exactly know for leading on lowing price, generally they have at best tried to keep competitive, the only reason they have started to kind of be the value play in internet service is because the cable companies can easily double their top speeds with technology they had widespread ten years ago, the most recent versions could do least twenty times DSL if the cable company were willing to offer it at a price people would pay, with similar revisions optimizing the entire coax cable's capacity for internet it could eventually be able to get close to 2000 times DSL's copper cable capacity.

SoonerDave
05-19-2014, 08:15 AM
When I read this, I thought, man, if I were a DirectTV customer, I'd throw up in my mouth.

It was awesome to watch T-Mobile kick ATT in the groin on their merger effort a year or so ago. Dunno if DirectTV is as adverse to the prospect, but it sure doesn't loom as a good thing for the customers of either.

At some point, someone is going to realize that pipes and bandwidth are the key to this puzzle over just content, and sadly ATT realizes if they can start to lock up both ends, it will get even uglier and more expensive for the end user.

Just the facts
05-19-2014, 08:18 AM
When I read this, I thought, man, if I were a DirectTV customer, I'd throw up in my mouth.


I did. We will see how it goes but like I said, if they screw this up I will switch to something else.

Dubya61
05-19-2014, 11:31 AM
When I read this, I thought, man, if I were a DirectTV customer, I'd throw up in my mouth.

It was awesome to watch T-Mobile kick ATT in the groin on their merger effort a year or so ago. Dunno if DirectTV is as adverse to the prospect, but it sure doesn't loom as a good thing for the customers of either.

At some point, someone is going to realize that pipes and bandwidth are the key to this puzzle over just content, and sadly ATT realizes if they can start to lock up both ends, it will get even uglier and more expensive for the end user.

I always got the impression that both sides were in favor of the merger (T-Mobile and AT&T). Did you think otherwise?

gopokes88
05-19-2014, 12:09 PM
Dish shares are jumping on rumors of a merger with Verizon.

Teo9969
05-19-2014, 01:16 PM
Dish shares are jumping on rumors of a merger with Verizon.

If I were a Dish stockholder I'd have straight up started the rumor and sold on the jump…I'd have published a fake report and everything. $$$$

Dubya61
05-20-2014, 02:33 PM
If I were a Dish stockholder I'd have straight up started the rumor and sold on the jump…I'd have published a fake report and everything. $$$$

Dish shouldn't feel too left out.
http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/05/18/att-to-buy-directv-for-48-5-billion/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0

AT&T agreed on Sunday to buy the satellite television operator DirecTV for $48.5 billion, trying to tilt the balance of power with media companies as the market for broadband Internet and video shifts.
With the acquisition, AT&T becomes the latest telecommunications giant seeking to establish an even greater reach.
Comcast agreed in February to buy Time Warner Cable for $45 billion, a bid to become the country’s dominant provider of cable TV and high-speed Internet access. And Sprint, which is controlled by the Japanese telecom company SoftBank, has made no secret of its desire to merge with T-Mobile USA, creating a serious rival toVerizon and AT&T.
“The media chessboard is moving more this year than it has in the past decade,” said Richard Greenfield, a media analyst with the brokerage firm BTIG. “You’re seeing major shifts. Everyone is jockeying for position.”
The newest round of consolidation may weigh heavily on the minds of government regulators, who have expressed growing concern that the nation’s television and Internet services are increasingly controlled by just a few corporate behemoths.
For consumers, the acquisition may change little, at least at first, since AT&T and DirecTV share little overlap. AT&T said on Sunday that it planned to bundle its new acquisition’s services with existing offerings like broadband Internet and cellphone service.
To some analysts, AT&T’s latest acquisition seems questionable. The pay television business is considered a mature market whose subscriber growth has slowed sharply in recent years.

The deal is the biggest in years for AT&T, which has long looked to acquisitions for growth. It is the largest transaction the company has announced since its aborted $39 billion offer for T-Mobile three years ago, a takeover fiercely opposed by antitrust regulators because it would have cut down on the number of wireless phone service providers.
This time, some analysts believe the company will face less heat from the federal government. By their reckoning, regulators are likely to look favorably upon a deal that creates a bulwark against a strengthened Comcast.
“They want wireless to compete with wires,” Mr. Greenfield, the media analyst, said. “The only way to complete that is to allow these deals to occur.”
AT&T has also learned from the botched deal. It will not have to pay DirecTV a breakup fee if the deal does not go through. It had to pay T-Mobile $6 billion.

“When I first heard the news, I was scratching my head,” said Jim Nail, an analyst with Forrester Research. “Satellite is kind of a doomed technology. I don’t see it being a long-term proposition.”

The pace of consolidation, meanwhile, may prompt Sprint and SoftBank to proceed with a bid for T-Mobile, a deal that has already faced vocal opposition from several officials at the Federal Communications Commission. In that view, a merger would shrink an already consolidated industry to an unacceptable three major players.
But Sprint and SoftBank have argued that such a deal would create more competition in the fast-growing wireless space, creating a more formidable opponent to Verizon and AT&T.
AT&T’s move also raises questions for the country’s other major satellite television provider, Dish Network. That company’s chief executive, Charles W. Ergen, has made noises about striking acquisitions to become a true broadband service provider, while also hinting that he may be willing to sell.
But AT&T was concerned that buying Dish would invite more regulatory scrutiny because of both its broadband ambitions and its existing trove of wireless spectrum, according to a person briefed on the matter.
It seems that Dish has a lot of freq assets that allow them to look for a different future than being a horse in a larger communications stable.

Bunty
05-20-2014, 03:43 PM
This AT&T/DirecTV merger is a nightmare: Why we should all be very afraid - Salon.com (http://www.salon.com/2014/05/19/telecom_nightmare_merging_our_way_into_a_scary_fut ure/)

venture
05-20-2014, 04:28 PM
Who would have thought lil ol' Southwestern Bell would become this behemoth. I really like my DirecTV and love their customer service. I was so impressed with them last year when I heard they gave those in Central OK a month to two months free service after the tornadoes to help out. I doubt AT&T would do the same once they get control. DTV also has, normally, very good customer service and that is something that will likely get hurt. Can't blame it on outsourcing though since I think most of DTV is already outsourced anyway.

We'll see how it goes down. Would rather Verizon buy them so I can consolidate services at some point, but it might also lead me to dump Verizon once i'm out of contract.

Questor
05-21-2014, 09:56 PM
This really makes me sad. DirecTV today is basically a premiere service... They are more expensive than the rest, but in turn you get amazing video quality including full 1080P on PPV (I'm not aware of anyone else offering this), great sports packages, and awesome customer service. If the buyout goes through, and AT&T screws that up, I'll seriously be jumping ship to whatever Apple eventually comes out with.