John Stankey, CEO at AT&T, has recently announced that the company is looking for options to sell DirecTV’s operations in Latin America. This is the first time that an AT&T executive expresses himself on this possibility. The announcement takes place at the same time as AT&T has sold a percentage of the DTH business in the US to the TPG Capital investment fund.
In Latin America, Directv’s and Sky’s operations in Brazil, as well as those of the SVOD OTT DirecTV GO, are controlled by Vrio Corp, a company that, according to AT&T’s latest quarterly results report (Q4 2020), ended the year with almost 11 million subscribers. This way, the company has shown positive net additions once again, since, as of September 30th, 2020, it had reported a total of 10,893 million subscribers, adding 49 thousand in the last three months of the year.
Under the terms of the announced deal, TPG Capital will pay AT&T a total of USD 7.8 billion for 30% of DirecTV’s business. In addition, AT& T’s pay TV units in the US – DirecTV (DTH); U-verse (IPTV) and AT&T TV (pay TV via OTT) will be controlled by a new company, which will also be called ‘DirecTV’.
‘As the pay-TV industry continues to evolve, forming a new entity with TPG to operate the US video business separately provides the flexibility and dedicated management focus needed to continue meeting the needs of a high-quality customer base and managing the business for profitability. TPG is the right partner for this transaction, and creating a new entity is the right way to structure and manage the video business for optimum value creation’, reported Stankey on the transaction.
In addition, as reported, the new company will run an agreement with AT&T to continue offering packages that include pay TV, internet and mobile service offers. In addition, video subscribers of the new DirecTV will be able to access HBO Max, already launched in the US, and whose arrival in Latin America is scheduled for June.