PACIFIC • The Future of Media Isn’t Media
The End of Media: If Federal Judge Richard J. Leon rules in favor of AT&T’s $85-billion Time Warner purchase tomorrow, it will affirm that technology, media and telecom are all competing in the same arena and, pending appeals, could give tech and telecom giants the green light to pursue a slew of major media acquisitions.
The Big Picture: It is entirely possible that tech and telecom companies will own all existing media companies, including Disney and Netflix, in the not-too-distant future. When we launched PACIFIC just over three months ago, a Hollywood media executive told us he believed that just eight companies — Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, Facebook, AT&T, Charter, Comcast and Verizon — would own all US media within the next ten years. We’ve put that theory to several Silicon Valley and Hollywood execs since then, and all of them either agree or say it is entirely within the realm of possibility.
In the more immediate future, Judge Leon’s approval of the deal would usher in a slew of mergers and acquisitions involving some of the smaller fish:
• Comcast vs. Disney for 21st Century Fox: Brian Roberts is likely to announce Comcast’s rival bid for 21st Century Fox this week, sources close to the matter tell me. The bid will be north of $60 billion, they believe, at least 15% higher than Disney’s $52.4-million bid.
Welcome to PACIFIC, and welcome to the new Hollywood, which runs from Culver City to Los Gatos to South Lake Union. With the AT&T/Time Warner news coming, today’s newsletter is focused on the intersection of tech and media, where there’s already a ton of news this week.
Fun fact: Amazon Studios’ new chief Jennifer Salke now flies to Amazon’s headquarters in Seattle roughly once a week, per NYT. Some advice: Sit on the right side of the plane going up, and the left side coming back. That way you get to see Mt. Rainer and Yosemite every time`