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AT&T Extends Time Warner Deal Termination Date, Awaiting DOJ Approval

Todd Spangler

AT&T and Time Warner have agreed to extend the termination date of the telco’s proposed $85 billion takeover of Time Warner, as the deal is still pending approval from U.S. regulators.

The pact, announced on Oct. 22, 2016, had originally been set to expire on Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017. AT&T said the termination date of the merger agreement is being extended “for a short period of time to facilitate obtaining final regulatory approval required to close the merger,” according to an SEC filing released Monday.

Last week, Brazil’s antitrust authority, the Conselho Administrativo de Defesa Econômica (CADE), approved AT&T’s acquisition of Time Warner. The Brazilian government’s approval, as with as previous approvals granted by Chile and Mexico, does not require the sale or divestiture of any AT&T or Time Warner assets.

In the U.S., the transaction remains under review by the U.S. Department of Justice. AT&T said it continues to expect the transaction to close by the end of 2017.

Following the deal’s expected close, John Stankey, previously CEO of AT&T Entertainment Group, will oversee a new media division that includes Time Warner. In the new role, Stankey will no longer be running DirecTV or U-verse broadband operations, a move that appeared aimed at alleviating regulators’ concerns about HBO, Turner and Warner Bros. being housed in the same operating unit with AT&T’s consumer service businesses.

AT&T is scheduled to report third-quarter 2017 earnings on Tuesday, Oct. 24, after market close.

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