On June 12, 2018, Judge Richard Leon ruled that AT&T's purchase of Time Warner could proceed over the objection of the Department of Justice. The purchase makes AT&T the new proud owner of entertainment organizations like HBO and CNN. So your final season of Game of Thrones will now be brought to you by AT&T.
The merger is expected to have a wide-ranging impact on companies both in the media landscape and beyond. Initially, the move has already kick-started the hyper-competitive media industry, which is ever-changing with the news that Netflix has surpassed Disney as the most valuable media company and now Comcast has announced an all-cash offer to purchase 21st Century Fox for $65 million.
Beyond the media landscape, the AT&T purchase passing legal muster is predicted to open up mergers across all industries. Vertical mergers, in particular, appear to be more plausible for companies going forward.
This new possible increase in consolidation will force businesses all over the country to adjust, as they may find themselves dealing with bigger and bigger competitors in their industry. Across all sectors, businesses may find that some of the biggest rivals may grow and take up even more space and market share through acquisitions of smaller businesses in the same industry, and possibly even of some of the other behemoths in the sector.
It is yet to be seen how other industries will react to this ruling, but if the immediate response in the media industry is any indication, there could be major changes ahead. Big or small, now seems like the perfect time to think about the future of your business and consult a lawyer to determine the best way to move forward in what could be a whole new era for business owners.