The rumored Time Warner-AT&T merger is suddenly on the fast track, with a deal possible as soon as this weekend, The Wall Street Journal reports.
“AT&T Inc. is in advanced talks to acquire Time Warner Inc., according to people familiar with the matter, a deal that would create a new hallmark in the rapidly converging realms of media, communications and the Internet,” WSJ reports. “A deal, which could happen as early as this weekend, would unite AT&T’s portfolio of wireless, broadband and satellite TV services with Time Warner’s entertainment empire, which includes cable networks such as TNT, TBS, CNN, the coveted premium channel HBO, and the Warner Bros. film and TV studio.”
The talks have come together quickly, the report notes, and a deal could still fall apart or be delayed.
“Time Warner shares rose 6.7% to $90.94 in early-afternoon trading after The Wall Street Journal reported the advanced talks, while AT&T fell 2.6% to $37.65,” WSJ notes.
The report adds: “A merger of the companies would be the most ambitious marriage of content and distribution in the media and telecom industries since Comcast Corp.’s 2011 purchase of NBCUniversal and would create a behemoth to rival that cable giant. A transaction would be far and away the biggest media deal of recent years. Time Warner has a market capitalization of $71 billion, while AT&T’s was $231.7 billion.”