Friday, October 21, 2016

Looks Like AT&T is Buying Time Warner for $85 Billion: Some Analysts Don't Like it But I Think They are Wrong

It seems that AT&T is buying content to go along with distribution. It seems like an interesting idea but I have to disagree with this guy.

Cowen and Co analyst Doug Creutz questioned the strategy of buying content instead of licensing it. 

"What does it get them that they can't get by licensing Time Warner content and at a much cheaper price than buying the whole company?" Creutz asked, noting it was unclear what savings could be gained "from stapling distribution and content together. It's been tried. It never works."  
Um, Mr. Creutz you get to hold onto that content forever because you own it. You don't have to worry about the content company charging you more for it in the future. Or having them restrict you in some way. if you own it you can then license said content out to others or simply revive the revenue stream like Disney did for Star Wars and Marvel. 

Think Game of Thrones movies or new TV shows set in that world. Maybe a political thriller set in Bravos or a prequel of some sort about Rhaegar Targaryen? Hell just take some of the HBO back-catalog and revive it for a new generation. Think a new Sorpanos told from Tony's 20-something son point of view that can be binged on Hulu. Or a new generation of the Wire or Deadwood with a whole new group and some of the old actors thrown in. I would sign up for Hulu in a minute if they made a new Rome or Band of Brothers with different actors. IP is one of the few things that is very hard to make more of. Netflix is good at it but HBO is probably the best of the best. 

It just boils down to owning the building instead of paying rent on your offices. It is way cheaper to pay rent but if you own the building you get money from every office in the place for as long as you own the building. Or if you want you can take another floor to expand R&D or whatever. But think of this office building as one that is nearly unique and it will cost billions to make another one. I think AT&T is getting a steal and I know why Apple also came after Time Warner a few months ago. AT&T is following the Disney model. 

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