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Report: AT&T Renews Efforts to Sell DIRECTV

By Eric Volkman – Aug 28, 2020 at 10:43PM

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The company has been under pressure for months to divest the satellite broadcaster.

For those with an extra few billion dollars in their pockets and a hankering to own a big satellite broadcaster, it seems that DIRECTV is again on the market. Citing people familiar with the matter, The Wall Street Journal on Friday reported that owner AT&T (T -0.89%) is apparently once more attempting to sell the business.

According to the article's sources, the company and advisor Goldman Sachs have held discussions with private equity firms on a sale of at least 50% of the unit. Among the interested parties are alternative-investment specialist Apollo Global Management and privately held Platinum Equity.

Other would-be investors that were approached declined to submit bids for DIRECTV. None of these formerly potential suitors were named.

Satellite dish silhouetted against the horizon in the background.

Image source: Getty Images.

All talks are in early stages. There's no guarantee a sale will be agreed upon, the article's sources stressed. No potential price or range was identified for DIRECTV, nor was there any indication of when a sale might take place.

Satellite was once the cutting edge of the broadcasting industry, but its position has been eroded by cord-cutting as customers gravitate to video streaming services.

AT&T is facing pressure from within to divest DIRECTV, one of several assets in its sizable entertainment portfolio. Last September, hedge fund Elliott Management divulged that it bought a $3.2 stake in the telecom giant and then immediately called for it to divest assets it considered insufficiently productive, including DIRECTV. Since then, AT&T has considered several ways to unload the unit, but none has yet come to fruition.

AT&T, Elliott Management, Goldman Sachs, and Apollo have not yet commented on the Journal article.

Eric Volkman has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Stocks Mentioned

AT&T Stock Quote
$19.02 (-0.89%) $0.17
Goldman Sachs Group Stock Quote
Goldman Sachs Group
$380.58 (-0.84%) $-3.23
Apollo Global Management Stock Quote
Apollo Global Management

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