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AT&T ready to pay nearly US$50b for DirecTV: report

AT&T is prepared to acquire satellite TV provider DirecTV in a deal that values it at nearly US$50 billion, the Wall Street Journal said Tuesday.

NEW YORK: AT&T is prepared to acquire satellite TV provider DirecTV in a deal that values it at nearly US$50 billion, the Wall Street Journal said Tuesday.

Talks are at an advanced stage and a deal could be announced in two weeks or even earlier, the Journal said, quoting people close to the deal.

The US business daily had reported early this month a deal was afoot but put the price tag then at around US$40 billion.

But one source noted the two companies have tried in the past to reach a deal but stumbled over the value of DirectTV.

DirecTV shares closed Monday at US$87.16 on Wall Street. An offer at US$95 dollars per share would value the company at nearly US$48 billion, the paper said.

The companies are discussing a share price in the low to mid-90s, the Journal quoted one source as saying.

The deal would give AT&T a national dimension in the pay TV industry.

The broader telecom and pay TV industries have been shaken up by Comcast's agreement to acquire Time Warner Cable for US$45 billion. These are the two largest US cable operators.

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