Time Warner could soon be up for sale, and Apple is reportedly keeping a very close eye on the situation. Apple is one of a handful of companies that are said to be interested in purchasing the major entertainment company. In recent times, Time Warner has received heavy pressure from investors to sell itself or spin off its assets.
A year and a half ago, 21st Century Fox attempted to purchase Time Warner at $85 per share, which is greater than its current trading price of around $71. Many view Time Warner as a sitting duck among media companies because of its lack of a dual-class shareholder structure.
Reports indicate that Fox is still interested in making the purchase. Another company that could possibly strike a deal is AT&T, which recently purchased DirecTV as well. However, perhaps the most intriguing suitor is Apple, which is known for its lucrative corporate takeovers.
If Apple does indeed become the buyer, the company would most likely use Time Warner’s assets to help launch its heavily anticipated stand-alone TV streaming service. So far, Apple has struggled to create a programming and content bundle from its existing partners.
Purchasing Time Warner would give Apple access to CNN, Turner Sports and massively popular shows such as “Game of Thrones” and “Sesame Street”. There is also the huge selection Warner Bros. movies and TV shows tucked away in the archives.
Last May, Apple joined forces with HBO in launching HBO Now, which functions as an internet-delivered TV service on Apple TV. The Apple TV device connects television sets to online programming.
One possible outcome outside of selling the entire company involves Time Warner possibly spinning off its holdings in HBO. However, CEO of Time Warner Jeff Bewkes is reportedly against the idea of cutting ties with HBO. Bewkes believes that splitting up the company would destroy its value.
Both Apple and Time Warner have declined to comment on the rumors.