Latest Updates on Warner Bros. Discovery Halts Talks on Paramount Global Acquisition

Warner Bros. Discovery has ceased discussions regarding a potential acquisition of Paramount Global, marking a pause after months of evaluating the possibility of merging the two media companies, according to sources familiar with the situation. Skydance Media, led by David Ellison, continues to conduct due diligence for a possible transaction, as confirmed by two individuals involved.

To navigate potential bids for the entire company or specific assets, Paramount Global has formed a special committee, which has enlisted its financial adviser. Media tycoon Byron Allen made a $14 billion offer for the company recently, though he has a track record of bidding on not finalizing large media deals.

Warner Bros. Discovery
Skydance Media continues due diligence, while Comcast explores potential commercial partnerships. (Credits: Getty Images)

One source mentioned that Comcast, the parent company of NBCUniversal, is not keen on acquiring Paramount Global assets. Instead, Comcast has been collaborating with its in-house bankers to explore potential commercial synergies with Paramount Global, as noted by insiders familiar with the matter.

This collaboration could involve integrating or bundling streaming services Peacock and Paramount+, as previously reported by The Wall Street Journal or exploring alternative arrangements. However, it remains uncertain if Paramount Global is inclined towards such proposals as it evaluates various sale scenarios.

Representatives for Comcast, Paramount Global, Skydance Media, and Warner Bros. Discovery have all declined to provide comments on the matter.

Warner Bros. Discovery
Warner Bros. Discovery and Paramount Global engage in merger discussions but talks cool off. (Credits: Getty Images)

CNBC reported that Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav had an initial discussion with Paramount Global CEO Bob Bakish in December. Subsequently, the companies entered more substantive merger talks in January, but momentum has waned this month.

Following Warner Bros. Discovery’s failure to meet analyst expectations for earnings and revenue, the company’s shares plummeted by 10% on Friday. Over the past year, shares have declined by 47% and are hovering close to a 52-week low. Similarly, Paramount Global’s stock is trading near its 52-week low as it prepares to announce its earnings on Wednesday.

Sajda Parveen
Sajda Parveen
Sajda Praveen is a market expert. She has over 6 years of experience in the field and she shares her expertise with readers. You can reach out to her at [email protected]
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