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T, DTV: AT&T Closing in on DirecTV Purchase Deal

DirecTV stock is up this morning


DirecTV (DTV) stock is up is up today on news that AT&T (T) is in advanced talks to purchase the satellite TV provider for $50 billion.

DirecTV, DTV, DTV stockBloomberg is reporting that unnamed sources are confirming that DirecTV would be run as a unit of AT&T, with current management staying on.

DTV is up 2% in early morning trading.

As the largest U.S. satellite-TV provider, DirecTV would add to AT&T’s arsenal of wireless, phone and high-speed Internet services.

The move, while offensive, is also being used to stave off competition as more U.S. TV, Internet and wireless providers consolidate.

Via Bloomberg:

The purchase would give AT&T a national satellite-TV provider to combine with its wireless, phone and high-speed broadband Internet services as competition ramps up. The pool of pay-TV customers is peaking in the U.S. because viewers are increasingly watching video online, and the combination would keep DirecTV from being on its own with just a TV offering and no competitive Internet package.

The deal is more than a week away from being completed, said another person familiar with the matter, who added the sides were still in talks on a price which could come in close to $95 a share, depending on how much cash or stock is in the transaction. The person said White’s departure was also still being negotiated. The price could go as high as $100 a share, two other people said.

Talks of the merger have been leaked for some time now (see: T, DTV: AT&T Rumors Swirl Over $40B DirecTV Merger).

The outstanding issue is whether regulators will allow these consolidations to continue moving forward.

AT&T withdrew from its plan to purchase T-Mobile US Inc. years back while facing antitrust opposition. And a DirecTV and Dish Network merger was blocked a decade ago.

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