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DirecTV Hopes Feds Scrutinize Comcast/TWC Uniquely

Says Media Giant Would Have ‘Effective Broadband Monopoly’ in 2/3 of Country 2/20/2014 4:08 PM Eastern

DirecTV is still in the process of determining what stance in Washington it will take in the approval process surrounding Comcast’s pending acquisition of Time Warner Cable, but chairman and CEO Mike White told analysts this afternoon that it could center on the combined company’s expected broadband market prowess.

Speaking to analysts on a conference call to discuss fourth quarter results, White said he hoped regulators scrutinize the deal in unique ways.

“If the deal is approved as proposed, it clearly represents an unprecedented media concentration in one company,” White said. “The challenge in terms of what posture we would take in Washington we haven’t decided yet. One of the challenges is to try and ensure that it is appropriately scrutinized in some kind of unique ways than you might traditionally look at, particularly around the effective broadband monopoly they might have in as much as two-thirds of the country and the impact of that, as well as the nexus or the interaction between the horizontal power and vertical power that they would have with content costs. Clearly this is something that we need to think about.”

 

September