Verizon, the TV provider and broadband giant is reportedly in talks with Charter Communications for a merger. Charter Communications has already acquired Time Warner Cable about a year ago. Charter is the second largest cable company in the country and according to Wall Street Journal, Verizon is exploring the possible combination. Both Charter and Verizon are extremely popular and their merger can result in a huge company. The amalgamation could result in a corporation that controls all kinds of communications such as home broadband, mobile data and voice, and cable TV. Many analysts expressed their concern on this ‘mad scramble’.
Currently, Verizon has 4.6 million TV subscribers, 114 million mobile phone subscribers and 7 million broadband internet subscribers. Charter, on the other hand, controls 21 million internet subscribers and 17 million TV subscribers. When these two companies come together, their overall subscribers will be much greater than the 21.6 million customers of Comcast. However, there is no formal announcement about the impending collaboration from either Charter or Verizon.
Verizon is facing extreme competition from AT&T and T-Mobile as they dominate the communications industry. Verizon has already expanded its presence by purchasing Yahoo and AOL which are both predominantly popular for internet content. Charter is also facing pressure as more consumers want to use online services instead of paying hefty cable bills every month.
Analysts predict that Verizon has to fight hard to keep its hold in the wireless communication industry. It is natural for the company to look for a bigger deal that would help the company to spread its roots. Experts predict that Verizon will be having talks with other giants apart from Charter.
Huge mergers are not uncommon as AT&T proposed a merger with Time Warner and Comcast has acquired NBCUniversal in 2009. President Donald Trump commented that he is skeptical about these huge mergers involving corporate giants. However, the industry hopes that the president won’t be taking measures to block the deal. While Trump’s campaign statements were filled with numerous claims, many experts anonymously suggested that he won’t be following up with most of those promises.
The upcoming Verizon-Charter deal would be overseen by Ajit Pai, chairman of Federal Communications Commission. He is well known as a supporter of promoting deals and so, he won’t be delaying the giant merger. Even though the opinion of Jeff Sessions, the would-be attorney general is not known, experts predict that he won’t be against the collaboration either. The regulatory laws will be relaxed according to Donald Trump and this will favor the enterprises. The merger announcements are expected to pour in the upcoming months as the rules are relaxed.
The industry is buzzing with activity now as the analysts predict that several deals will be allowed in a short window. As a result, companies willing to expand their business will be holding talks with enterprises resulting in the formation of new corporate giants. Gene Kimmelman, president of Public Knowledge expresses his concerns that the communication giants will take extreme control of internet transmissions.