AT&T Pitches WarnerMedia Strategy To Wall Street Analysts, Detailing Three Tiers Of 2019 Streaming Offering

CEO Randall Stephenson opened the two-hour event at Time Warner Center. He took the screening room stage after a sizzle reel played, punctuated by a special-effects shot of a Game of Thrones dragon flying directly over the head of a young AT&T mobile phone user.
Strategy is another question mark, with many analysts and media watchers wondering how WarnerMedia's streaming plans will shake out, especially with rival Disney gearing up for its own OTT milestone in 2019. On the pay-TV side, subscriber losses at DirecTV have not been compensated by gains with skinny-bundle service DirecTV Now, leaving some uncertainty about how quickly that longtime bulwark will fade and harm the balance sheet.
Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments on December 6 in the government's appeal of its antitrust lawsuit. A lower-court federal judge issued a decision last June siding firmly with AT&T, and the $81 billion deal closed within a few days. Circuit of the U.S. The D.C. The legal status of the merger also remains murky.
AT&T is delivering its post-merger pitch to a roomful of Wall Street analysts this afternoon, and shedding new light on its direct-to-consumer OTT service launching in late 2019. (Keep refreshing for updates.)
(Executives say by the end of 2019, net debt will be at two-and-a-half times adjusted earnings.) Wall Street has been skeptical of some aspects of the acquisition of Time Warner, for a few reasons. The analyst day is giving the company the chance to show off and explain its new structure to the investment community. First, the deal substantially increased the company's debt load and some analysts have wondered how the company will reach new heights when it is more concerned about paying off debt.
"Lots happened over the past year," Stephenson deadpanned in his trademark drawl, alluding to the nearly two-year odyssey (still not over) of fending off President Donald Trump's Department of Justice, who sought to block the $81 billion Time Warner merger. "That caused us to put on hold a lot of our plans. We're now in a place where we're ready and we want to share those plans with you." …
It will have an entry-level movie-focused package; a premium service with original programming and blockbuster movies; and a third service bundling content from the first two plus an extensive library of WarnerMedia and licensed content. The still-unnamed WarnerMedia streaming service will include three levels, the company said. Pricing or exact launch plans have yet to be revealed, and HBO Now has recently passed 5 million subscribers on its three-year-old HBO Now service, which is expected to continue.
It is forecasting total WarnerMedia synergies reaching a run rate of $2.5 billion by the end of 2021. The company expects to reach a run rate of about $700 million by the end of 2019, increasing to $2 billion by the end of 2020 and ramping to $2.5 billion by the end of 2021. Financially, the company expects earnings per share growth in the low single digits in 2019 as it absorbs the new content operations. About $1.5 billion of that will be cost synergies, with the remaining $1 billion resulting from additional sales opportunities, lower subscriber churn and higher advertising.
One condition of the closing is that the Turner Broadcasting unit is being kept siloed from the DirecTV and other pay-TV distribution holdings of the company, which would enable it to unwind the merger if the courts ultimately block it. While that outcome is seen as unlikely, the appeal still casts somewhat of a shadow over AT&T.” />

WME L.A. Headquarters Gets All-Clear After Evacuation For Suspicious Package – Update

Officially the BHPD said that: "Officers responded to a suspicious package. "The situation was assessed and the threat level was found to be low," a law enforcement official told Deadline. It was just an envelope. The investigation cleared it of being suspicious. The evacuation lasted about 45 minutes. Nothing harmful."
As a precaution, Camden Avenue was closed down by the Beverly Hills Police for a spell.
The package was one of several devices addressed to at that time to the likes of Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Eric Holder, Democratic Rep. On October 24, CNN’s Time Warner Center was evacuated after the delivery of a "live” suspicious package that also contained a white powder. Maxine Waters, as well as a pipe bomb that  was found in the mailbox of billionaire George Soros.
UPDATED: Tenants of the Beverly Hills building housing WME's headquarters at 9601 Wilshire Blvd are being permitted back into the structure, with Beverly Hills police packing up after assessing the situation that involved a suspicious package.
A suspect in the mailings, Cesar Sayoc Jr of Florida, was arrested October 26.” />
It still hasn't been determined the contents of the package that raised concerns.
The upper agency floors were not evacuated, leaving employees with the impression the situation wasn't that dangerous or a serious threat. Approximately 40 people, mostly from the Garden level and Equinox health club, were evacuated Wednesday afternoon.
It wound up being filled with an unknown liquid. In August 2015, CAA's Avenue of the Stars Century City building was evacuated over security concerns after a suspicious package was found there. The building was closed for roughly four hours.