Which company is buying Time Warner Cable?
The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday reported that Time Warner’s cable operator is in talks to buy DirecTV.
The Wall St. Journal report was the latest in a series that began when analysts at investment bank Blackstone and investment group Blackstone Asset Management raised questions about the potential acquisition of Time Warner in October.
The company’s shares fell 4% to $58.20 in late trading on Tuesday.
The analysts questioned whether the company could sell its existing cable TV and Internet TV services in the U.S. after years of declines in the industry, and also questioned whether Time Warner could afford to make such a big investment in a company that has been struggling to attract customers.
AT&T, Comcast, Verizon, Charter and others have been circling Time Warner for months.
The two companies, which have the largest cable and Internet services in North America, had recently agreed to a deal that could have valued the company at $85 billion, according to a Bloomberg report.
AT &T has previously been seeking a $45 billion buyout of Time Group, a media and entertainment conglomerate that owns NBCUniversal, Hulu, Comedy Central, TBS and other properties.
Comcast, which is in the middle of a merger with NBCUniversal to create NBCUniversal NBCUniversal CEO Amy Corwin said Tuesday that the deal is “coming together well.”
Comcast, Time Warner and Time Warner have been in talks for months about acquiring Time Warner, but there has been no agreement.
AT is interested in buying Time, the Wall Street report said.
AT has been seeking to acquire Time Warner.
In November, AT&C chairman Bob McDermott said that AT&t was “really focused on Time Warner,” and he had no specific comment on the talks between Time Warner Chief Executive Jeffrey Bewkes and AT&ts CEO Jeff Immelt.
AT shares were down 1% in premarket trading on Wednesday.
Time Warner shares closed down 0.4% in early trading Tuesday.
AT will announce its final purchase decision next week.
The merger would make AT&s fourth attempt to buy Time Warner since it entered the video-streaming business in the late 1990s.
AT wants to acquire Directv to take advantage of its own cable TV service and to increase its broadband network.
AT also wants to take a greater stake in cable and broadband companies such as Charter and Verizon.