AT&T is about to close a deal to sell a significant minority stake in its DirecTV, AT&T TV Now and U-Verse businesses to private company TPG, according to insiders.
The deal could be announced immediately this week, said people who asked not to be named because the discussions are private.
The deal will value AT&T’s business at about $ 15 billion. AT&T acquired DirecTV in 2015 for $ 48.5 billion ($ 67 billion in debt).
AT&T has moved away from traditional pay-TV in the last few years as it has focused its media strategy around HBO Max. DirecTV, U-Verse and AT&T TV are now based on a linear television business on broadcast and cable networks, which loses millions of subscribers each year.
AT&T lost nearly 3 million video customers last year and charged a $ 1
The sale will provide AT&T with additional cash to pay off its $ 150 billion debt, which has been steadily declining over the past year.
Hedge fund Elliott Management took an active stake in AT&T in September 2019. In a letter to management, Elliott asked AT&T to focus its strategic operations while considering selling insignificant assets – including DirecTV. AT&T CEO John Stankey opposed the full sale.
TPG declined to comment. AT&T could not be reached immediately for comment.