Judge approves AT&T acquisition of Time Warner

Photo by Toby Jorrin/Getty Images

A federal judge ruled on Tuesday that AT&T can move forward with its $85 billion acquisition of Time Warner.

Judge Richard Leon of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia said at a hearing that he has found, after a six-week trial, that the deal does not violate antitrust law and can proceed.

Leon discouraged the government from asking him to put his own ruling on hold pending appeal, and said that if asked he would deny a stay. “I hope the government has the wisdom and courage” not to seek a stay, he said.

The Justice Department, which had sued to block the purchase, has the option of appealing the decision. According to a scheduling order, AT&T has agreed not to complete the acquisition for six days to allow time for an appeal.

Makan Delrahim, the Justice Department’s top antitrust official, said the government was disappointed in the ruling and would “consider next steps.”

“We continue to believe that the pay-TV market will be less competitive and less innovative as a result of the proposed merger between AT&T and Time Warner,” he said in a statement.

The judge’s ruling will likely be seen by tech and telecom giants as a green light to pursue a slew of major media acquisitions.

CNN is owned by Time Warner.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.