Space Jam

After a weekend of shock negotiations, AT&T agreed on Monday to shed its WarnerMedia content division into a new $100-150 billion joint venture company that will include all the entertainment assets of rival Discovery and be run by Discovery’s CEO David Zaslav. Such a spin-off would mark a dramatic reversal in AT&T’s strategy to amass distribution and production under one synergistic roof. It also sends out a clear signal that neither WarnerMedia nor Discovery feel they are enticing enough on their own to succeed in the crowded streaming arena, and that AT&T would rather devote its debt-strained resources on building out its 5G telecom network. Many more mergers between streaming heavyweights are anticipated in this winner-takes-most battle for the world’s audience attention.

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