AT&T trumps Ergen in DirecTV bid
May 1, 2014
By Chris Forrester
A merger between DirecTV and EchoStar’s Dish might make good sense for an industry which as far as North America is concerned has plateaued as far as new business is concerned. But in steps telco giant AT&T with a “possible acquisition” of DirecTV.
The Wall Street Journal reports that such a deal might cost AT&T at least $40 billion to conclude, and potentially leave DirecTV’s near-20 million pay-TV subs combined with AT&T’s IPTV U-verse subs of some 5.7 million into a pay-TV giant that compares well with a combined Comcast+Time Warner operation.
AT&T is already linked with DirecTV in a marketing effort to push DTH where U-verse has no broadband coverage. The WSJ says DirecTV is “open” to the approach. Quite where this leaves EchoStar/Dish is anyone’s guess, except to say that any bid – from anyone – for DirecTV would face tough regulatory and anti-trust examination.