AT&T has received bids for DIRECTV for roughly $15 billion and could close a deal in early 2021, according to a Wall Street Journal report.
The bids include ones from Apollo Global Management, and Churchill Capital Corp, both equity investment firms. WSJ writes that Apollo’s bid was for slightly less than $15 billion while Churchill’s offer was valued at higher than that amount.
What’s unclear is whether AT&T is offering a majority or minority stake in the satellite TV service, and how DIRECTV would be managed under the new ownership team. AT&T is believed to be interested in handing off the management duties to the buyer so it can focus instead on streaming ventures such as HBO Max.
“The auction is in a late stage and should the company reach a deal with one of the suitors, it could be completed by early next year,” WSJ writes.
AT&T bought DIRECTV for $49 billion in 2015 so unless it sold considerably less than a 50 percent stake in the satcaster, it would take a significant loss. However, DIRECTV’s value has been shrinking thanks to six million subscriber defections since the AT&T purchase.
There may be other bidders besides Apollo and Churchill, but the two investment firms both bring an interesting mix to the table.
Richard Parsons, the former chairman and CEO of Time Warner, which during his tenure included Time Warner Cable, is on Churchill’s management team. Parsons has vast experience with the pay TV industry, and is very familiar with the history of DIRECTV. His expertise would be immensely helpful in steering the nation’s largest satellite TV service in the right direction.
Apollo last year purchased a few dozen local TV stations owned by Cox Media, and in 2016 bought Redbox, the disc rental kiosk business.
Need to buy something today? Please buy it using this Amazon.com link. This site receives a small portion of each purchase, which helps us continue to provide these articles.
Have a question about new TV technologies? Send it to The TV Answer Man at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your first name and hometown in your message.
— Phillip Swann
So, which one, if either, should us subs hope for? Will either one of them attempt to sell to Dish?
Who ever buys Directv, the drastically need to improve customer service, what a joke, they don’t give a rats butt about the current customer base, just about getting money in the bank. Directv/A.T&T. Is a horrible company to deal with.
If DirecTV has a buyer who is willing to improve their terms and customer service…I would consider returning to them.
However, until things like astronomically raising rates in the second year of the contract, price increases while locked in a contract, rampant carriage dispute issues, and foreign customer service are addressed, I am stuck with Dish as streaming and over-the-air antennas don’t work for us in rural America!
AT&T’S CUSTOMER SERVICE IS HORRIBLE! I HOPE WHOEVER TAKES OVER HAS A BETTER PLAN- AS I WILL NOT WANT A COMPANY WHO DOES NOT HOLD UP THEIR END OF A CONTRACT AND TAKES FULL ADVANTAGE OF PEOPLE AND THEIR BANK ACCOUNTS! YOU HAVE TO ARGUE EVERY MONTH WITH THEM, I WILL FULFILL MY CONTRACT AND WILL GO SOMEWHERE WITH BETTER CUSTOMER SERVICE…..
I have Philo, plus use the free streaming platforms. I use an antenna for locals, and don’t need espn or the rsn’s. I save over a hundred dollars a month and will never go back to cable or sat. they have my sympathy.
Lower the overall rates period the current middle package should be the entry level package at the entry level rate
Offer a sports op out for those that don’t want sports for a discount