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May 20, 2014
06:44 EDTT, TWC, DTV, CMCSAAT&T deal could facilitate approval of Comcast transaction, NY Times reports
AT&T's (T) acquisition of DirecTV (DTV) could facilitate regulatory approval of Comcast's (CMCSA) acquisition of Time Warner Cable (TWC), since Comcast would be competing against a larger AT&T if ithe latter company's deal is approved, The New York Times quoted a former antitrust official as saying. Unlike the Comcast deal, the AT&T acquisition would eliminate competition in a significant number of large markets, the newspaper noted. Reference Link
News For CMCSA;TWC;T;DTV From The Last 14 Days
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September 30, 2015
17:04 EDTTWCEarthLink, Time Warner Cable extend high-speed service agreement
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13:33 EDTTWC, CMCSAFCC review of Charter-TWC deal likely to extend into 1Q16, CTFN says
The FCC's review of Charter Communications' (CHTR) proposed merger with Time Warner Cable (TWC) and Bright House Networks will likely extend into the first quarter of 2016 and could take even longer, CTFN reports, citing an attorney who often deals with telecom issues before the FCC. "...It is virtually impossible for the FCC to complete its review and adopt an order approving the license transfer before 1Q16 and, in my opinion, even getting it done before April 1 is a stretch," Barbara Esbin, a partner at law firm Cinnamon Mueller, told CTFN in an email. Esbin also said that the merger "appears to have drawn none of the heavy flack that felled Comcast (CMCSA)-TWC," a proposal that was nixed by the FCC and DOJ earlier this year, the report says. California utility regulators are also preparing for their own review of the deal since it will particularly effect the southern half of the state, the report says. Reference Link
13:10 EDTTAT&T says DirecTV's Audence Network now available on U-verse
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11:31 EDTTOn Track Innovations files patent infringement lawsuits against AT&T, Verizon
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10:50 EDTTAT&T, Verizon could find it hard to sell enterprise businesses, CTFN says
The wireline units of AT&T (T) and Verizon (VZ) that serve corporate customers may be viewed as good units to sell if the companies need to raise cash to help defray spectrum acquisition costs, but a small number of potential buyers and low EBITDA multiples for the units could make any such divestitures challenging, contended CTFN. Level 3 (LVLT) could be seen as a potentially interested buyer, but a source within the company told CTFN that purchasing units that are part of other companies, known as a "carve out," doesn't match the company's usual M&A strategy. Reference Link
07:20 EDTTAT&T Q3 wireless adds better than expected, says UBS
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05:38 EDTTAT&T IoT technology used by Maersk
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September 29, 2015
16:52 EDTTAT&T backs FY15 adjusted EPS view $2.62-$2.68, consensus $2.62
Backs FY15 double-digit revenue growth, consensus $153.06B. In a regulatory filing, AT&T reiterated its guidance for full-year adjusted EPS, double-digit revenue growth and continued consolidated margin expansion, even with foreign exchange pressure from the company's international operations. The company also expects capital spending to increase from second-quarter levels and free cash flow to be greater than $4.5B for the quarter. The company also reaffirmed all other full-year guidance. AT&T's wireless performance includes results from both business and consumer customers. AT&T expects more than 2M total net adds in the third quarter with gains in every customer category (postpaid, prepaid, connected devices and reseller). The company also expects positive branded voice net adds in the quarter. As a result, and with a continued focus on efficiency initiatives, the Company expects to maintain momentum in wireless service EBITDA margins. AT&T said its early integration efforts with DIRECTV are going well and are in line or better than expectations. The Company expects to report positive U.S. DIRECTV net adds in the third quarter and positive IP broadband net adds. U-verse TV subscribers are expected to decline as the Company continues to focus on satellite and high-value subscribers. The Company also said that it is changing the methodology DIRECTV used to count commercial subscribers to conform to AT&T practices. Previously, DIRECTV used a method of counting commercial customers that converted commercial accounts to an equivalent number of residential subscribers based on relative revenues per account. Under the new methodology, the Company will simply count each commercial account as one subscriber. This will reduce DIRECTV's total subscriber count by 918,600 at acquisition close on July 24, 2015. This change has no impact on historical or future revenues, EBITDA or cash flows. In International, the Company continues to show great progress in its deployment of 4G LTE in Mexico as the Company invests in that country's wireless network. AT&T is on track with reaching its end-of-year goal of covering 40 million POPs. The Company also continues its work on creating operating efficiencies for its Latin America satellite properties, even with foreign exchange pressure. AT&T will announce its full third-quarter results on Oct. 22.
12:57 EDTTWCFCC nod for TWC, Charter deal may not be as easy as expected, dealReporter says
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12:27 EDTTAT&T may take $1.1B charge for DirecTV Venezuela assets, Reuters reports
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11:09 EDTCMCSAGoPro announces launch of channel on Comcast Watchable
GoPro (GPRO) announced it's bringing the GoPro Channel to Watchable, Comcast's (CMCSA, CMCSK) new, cross-platform video service. GoPro's first Multichannel Video Programming Distributor agreement will deliver GoPro content to users on iOS,, and X1. Launching in beta, all Watchable content is free, the company stated.
11:05 EDTCMCSAComcast launches video platform Watchable, Business Insider reports
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10:56 EDTTAT&T may take $1.1B charge for DirecTV Venezuela assets, CNBC says
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September 28, 2015
09:12 EDTTWCRovi news a 'small positive first step,' says JPMorgan
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08:07 EDTTWCRovi, Time Warner Cable extend existing agreement
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07:28 EDTTSamsung to pay customers up to $120 for buying new Galaxy phone, Verge says
Samsung's (SSNLF) new promotion in the U.S. will pay the rest of a customer's monthly payments in 2015 towards a new Galaxy S6, S6 Edge, S6 Edge+, or Galaxy Note 5, the Verge reports. The promotion will result in $120 off the price of any of those phones if users buy one under a new carrier installment plan between now and October 9, the report says. AT&T (T) will sit the promotion out, the report says. Reference Link
06:08 EDTCMCSAComcast NBCUniversal to acquire 51% stake in Universal Studios Japan
Comcast NBCUniversal (CMCSA) announced that it has agreed to purchase 51% ownership of Universal Studios Japan in a recapitalization transaction, partnering with the current owners including Goldman Sachs (GS), USJ's CEO Glenn Gumpel, Asian private-equity firm MBK Partners, and U.S. hedge fund Owl Creek Asset Management. Comcast NBCUniversal's purchase price for the majority ownership of the theme park destination is Y183B, or $1.5B. "We are excited to expand our global footprint with this wonderful theme park in Osaka and are excited by the opportunities that lie ahead in Japan and all of Asia," said Brian L. Roberts, Chairman and CEO of Comcast. "This investment represents a huge opportunity and commitment to creating value for our shareholders and continuing to grow internationally." Acquiring majority ownership of Universal Studios Japan continues Comcast NBCUniversal's ongoing investment strategy for it's U.S. parks in Orlando and Hollywood.
September 27, 2015
19:39 EDTCMCSA'Hotel Transylvania 2' bites down in record-setting debut
Animated children's film "Hotel Transylvania 2" set a domestic record for September while "Maze Runner" and "Black Mass" dropped in their second weekends at the box office. WEEKEND LEADER: Sony's (SNE) computer animated comedy "Hotel Transylvania 2" grossed $47.5M during its domestic open for the weekend of September 27, beating expectations for $35M-$40M and setting a new record for September box office debuts. Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez, and others returned to provide voice acting for the monster-themed movie, which saw the biggest open yet for Sony Pictures Animation. BOX OFFICE RUNNERS-UP: With Robert DeNiro and Anne Hathaway in leading roles, Time Warner (TWX) subsidiary Warner Bros.' "The Intern" opened at $18.2M against estimates sales of $15M-$20M. Fox's (FOX, FOXA) "Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials" came in third with $14M after grossing $30.3M domestically during last weekend's debut. Meanwhile, Comcast (CMCSA, CMCSK) subsidiary Universal's "Everest" jumped to $13.1M after significantly expanding its screen count, while Warner Bros.' "Black Mass" rounded out this weekend's Top 5 at $11.5M.
September 25, 2015
13:17 EDTCMCSAFly Watch: 'Hotel Transylvania 2' expected to top weekend box office
Sony's (SNE) animated sequel "'Hotel Transylvania 2," which is opening in 3,600 theaters, is expected to win this weekend's box office with a domestic gross of $35M-$40M. The next bunch of films are all expecting similar grosses in the mid-to-high teens. Time Warner (TWX) subsidiary Warner Bros.' comedy "The Intern," starring Robert DeNiro and Anne Hathaway, is estimated to open in the $15M-$20M range in 3,305 theaters. Comcast (CMCSA, CMCSK) subsidiary Universal's "Everest," which opened last weekend on IMAX (IMAX), is expanding to over 3,000 theaters this weekend and is estimated to gross in the range of $15M-$17M. Fox's (FOX, FOXA) "Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials," which grossed $30.3M domestically for the weekend of September 20, is expected to earn an estimated $16M in its second weekend of release. Warner Bros.' Whitey Bulger biopic "Black Mass," which took in $23.4M in its domestic opening last weekend, is expected to gross $12.5M-$13M this weekend. Additionally, Lions Gate's (LGF) drug cartel drama "Sicario" is playing in about 50 theaters ahead of the film's wide release on October 2.
10:48 EDTCMCSAMorgan Stanley cautious on media, but sees several stocks punished too hard
Morgan Stanley cut its price targets on a number of media companies, citing the impact of cord cutting and skinny bundles. The firm also reduced its outlook for the pay-TV sector due to its belief that the adoption of skinny bundles will accelerate, while the outlook for cable TV ads has deteriorated slightly, given macro pressures. The firm kept a Cautious view on the media sector, but also identified several stocks in the space that it thinks have been punished too harshly by investors recently. WHAT'S NEW: TV networks in general, and cable networks in particular, have the highest margins in media and are encountering increased top and bottom line competitive pressures, Morgan Stanley analyst Benjamin Swinburne believes. On the top line, they are being hit by ratings and ad pressures as well as cord cutting and distribution consolidation, the analyst stated. Meanwhile, their profit is being hurt by the increased need to obtain new content and intensified competition for content from new sources like Netflix (NFLX) and Google's (GOOG) YouTube, Swinburne said. However, the analyst thinks that media stocks are "starting to get" cheap, given the leverage that many of the companies carry. Swinburne cuts his price target on 21st Century Fox (FOXA) to $31 from $37, on AMC Networks (AMCX) to $86 from $88, on CBS (CBS) to $46 from $56, on Time Warner (TWX) to $72 from $87 and on Viacom (VIAB) to $48 from $60. He kept Overweight ratings on Fox, AMC and CBS, an Equal Weight rating on Time Warner and an Underweight rating on Viacom. OVERDONE DECLINES: Swinburne believes that the declines in three media stocks - CBS, 21st Century Fox, and AMC Networks - have been overdone, while the decline in Comcast's (CMCSA) stock has also been excessive. CBS and 21st Century Fox are "best positioned for the skinny bundle" and have the cheapest valuations relative to their growth rates, Swinburne believes. Meanwhile, AMC Networks has "content momentum" and its EPS can exceed expectations, the analyst believes. Comcast is gaining share in the broadband Internet market, could take share in video soon, and has sufficient scale and offerings to benefit from the increased popularity of skinny bundles, according to the analyst, who kept an Overweight rating on the stock. The media sector could benefit from consolidation going forward, added Swinburne, who recommended that investors interested in buying potential takeover targets in the space focus on AMC Networks, MSG Networks (MSG) and Dreamworks Animation (DWA). He kept Overweight ratings on all three of those stocks. OTHERS TO WATCH: Besides Comcast, other pay TV companies include DISH Network (DISH) and Charter Communications (CHTR). PRICE ACTION: In early trading, Fox A shares lost 0.5% to $25.83, AMC fell 0.3% to $73.29, CBS added 0.2% to $41, Time Warner was little changed at $67.66 and Comcast A shares added 0.6% to $57.17.
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