Executive 1: Comcast will spin off NBCUniversal and merge it with Warner Bros. Discovery

Warner Bros. Discovery is approaching the two-year anniversary of its 2022 merger, when Discovery combined with WarnerMedia. That deadline is important for Reverse Morris Trust tax reasons. Without getting into the boring details, the important part is Warner Bros. Discovery can do another significant deal two years after the close of Discovery and WarnerMedia.

One executive targeted NBCUniversal as the most likely acquirer of Warner Bros. Discovery. This executive predicted Comcast CEO Brian Roberts would spin off NBCUniversal so that the new company would trade separately. But, Comcast (and Roberts) would keep a controlling stake of the ownership of the new entity.

A second executive suggested a more expansive scenario. Comcast will keep its theme parks business but sell the rest of the company in exchange for WBD common shares. Comcast will get a premium for the remainder of NBCUniversal in exchange for Roberts giving up his voting shares. Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav runs the combined company, with NBCUniversal film chief Donna Langley staying on to run an expanded studio.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *