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Will the DreamWorks Acquisition Pay Off for Comcast?

By Motley Fool Staff - May 6, 2016 at 12:24PM

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It's all about content and characters for the company making the purchase.

Last week, shortly after posting a strong first-quarter earnings report, Comcast (CMCSA 0.66%) announced its plan to acquire DreamWorks Animation (DWA) for $3.8 billion. That's a heavy premium for a company that has had a solid, but not outstanding, run at the box office.

DreamWorks has clear hit properties in Shrek, How to Train Your Dragon, and Kung Fu Panda. It also has a borderline franchise in Madagascar, as well as other properties like Turbo, which may have some life left in them.

Still, DreamWorks is not Marvel, Pixar, of Lucasfilm, so the price of this deal definitely deserves to be at least examined. In this segment from the Motley Fool Money radio show, Chris Hill and Matt Argersinger talk about what Comcast probably wants from the deal, and why the deal might not be all it's cracked up to be for Comcast.

A transcript follows the video.

This podcast was recorded on April 29, 2016. 

Chris Hill: Shares of Comcast up earlier this week after a strong first-quarter report, but the stock gave back those gains and more after the company agreed to buy DreamWorks Animation for $3.8 billion. I don't know, Matty. First of all, they got the money, and it seems like a pretty smart bet for them.

Matt Argersinger: It might be, but there's a hint of desperation here with this deal, I think. And I think that's what the market is saying, too. If you look at it, $3.8 billion for DreamWorks ... Disney (DIS -1.20%) paid $4 billion each for Marvel and LucasfilmNow, Kung Fu Panda vs Star Wars or The Avengers? I don't know. I just feel like the intellectual property of Marvel or Lucasfilm is much stronger. 

I think this is Comcast's best bet to try to really go after that, and bolster their film slate. To me, it's just a bigger signal about the overall entertainment space. I think we're going to see a lot of consolidation there. Lionsgate (LGF-A -3.79%) is another one that's been a target of other, larger companies. There's a big grab, I think, for franchises that have timeless qualities. Kung Fu Panda, ShrekHow to Train Your Dragon... I don't know if those have timeless qualities. But they're certainly valuable properties.

Hill: Nice week for DreamWorks shareholders, though.

Argersinger: Very nice.

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Stocks Mentioned

Comcast Corporation Stock Quote
Comcast Corporation
CMCSA
$39.83 (0.66%) $0.26
DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. Stock Quote
DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc.
DWA
The Walt Disney Company Stock Quote
The Walt Disney Company
DIS
$96.61 (-1.20%) $-1.17
Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. Stock Quote
Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.
LGF-A
$9.64 (-3.79%) $0.38

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