AT&T, Discovery reportedly in talks to combine media assets

AT&T is reportedly in talks to merge its WarnerMedia assets with Discovery’s.

Angela Lang/CNET

AT&T is in talks to combine its media assets with Discovery in a deal that would create a new entertainment industry titan to take on Netflix and Disney, Bloomberg reported Sunday, citing unidentified sources described as having knowledge of the matter.

Negotiations are ongoing and could end without an agreement, although a deal could be announced as soon as this week, the report said. That deal would have an enterprise value of about $150 billion, the Financial Times reported.

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AT&T already owns popular entertainment brands such as HBO, HBO Max, CNN and more through its WarnerMedia division. Discovery is home to Animal Planet, HGTV and the Discovery Channel, which reaches 88.3 million homes in the US.

HBO and HBO Max, which launched in 2020, had a combined 44.2 million subscribers in the first quarter, compared with Disney Plus’ 103 million subscribers and Netflix’s 207 million subscribers.

AT&T’s acquisition of Time Warner in 2018 combined one of the largest communications network providers with a major player in the entertainment market. The $85 billion deal was approved after alleviating regulators’ concerns that the combined company could have too much power over competitors.

Representatives for AT&T and Discover didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

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