|AT&T is the world's largest telecoms company in the world by revenues. It was established in 1877 by Alexander Graham Bell, who obtained the first US patent for the telephone. (Photo by= Getty Images)|
[Asia News Communication = Reporter Reakkana] US telecom giant AT&T made an agreement to combine its WarnerMedia business with Discovery in a deal to create a new streaming giant. BBC reported that the tie-up brings one of Hollywood's biggest studios and Discovery's channels under the same ownership.
AT&T owns CNN, HBO, and Warner Bros, after acquiring many brands in a $108.7bn purchase of Time Warner in 2018. The deal also marks the entry of another player into a crowded market. The proposed merger would put together movie giant Warner Bros. Entertainment, which owns the Harry Potter and Batman franchises, with Discovery's home, cooking, nature, and science shows. "This agreement unites two entertainment leaders with complementary content strengths and positions the new company to be one of the leading global direct-to-consumer streaming platforms," said AT&T chief executive John Stankey.
WarnerMedia-owned HBO and HBO Max now have around 64 million subscribers worldwide. It’s currently dwarfed by larger rivals Netflix, which has 208 million subscribers, and Disney+, which has more than 100 million. Discovery, whose portfolio includes Animal Planet and the Discovery Channel, reaches more than 88 million US homes, while its Discovery+ streaming service, which launched in January, has 15m subscribers. Under the terms of the deal, AT&T will receive $43bn and its shareholders will own 71% of the new company, while Discovery shareholders will hold 29%.