DoJ pressed to weigh in on WarnerMedia sale - Mobile World Live

DoJ pressed to weigh in on WarnerMedia sale

06 DEC 2021
lawmakers

A group of 33 members of the US Congress asked the Department of Justice (DoJ) to conduct a thorough review of a planned $43 billion sale of WarnerMedia to Discovery by AT&T, potentially the first serious opposition to the operator’s plan.

In a letter, the politicians stated the transaction poses concerns around reducing competition in the media industry.

Diversity in media content and hiring is a key issue raised, with the politicians citing a “lack of Hispanic representation in the workforce”.

“Additional consolidation is likely to eliminate competition for these workers and reduce the number of employment opportunities for Hispanic individuals looking to enter the industry”, the politicians wrote.

The group argued lack of diversity in the media workforce can lead to under-representation of people of colour in the content produced.

AT&T also faced DoJ scrutiny when it purchased the WarnerMedia assets for $85 billion.

The operator stated in May 2021 it expected to close the WarnerMedia sale by mid-2022, with plans to form a new company combining assets from it and Discovery.

AT&T has sold a number of assets since CEO John Stankey took over in July 2020, including Playdemic, Vrio and several smaller properties.

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Martha DeGrasse

Freelance tech journalist Martha DeGrasse (@mardegrasse) is delighted to be contributing to Mobile World Live. Martha has written for a number of telecom and wireless publications, and was a writer, editor and video producer at RCR Wireless News for almost...

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