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As mergers and acquisitions talk continues to dominate the media sector, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts has once again thrown cold water on deal speculation surrounding the cable and media giant, including NBCUniversal.
If he and NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell have planned any big moves for new media assets, they didn’t show their hand with Wall Street analysts during a call following the release of Comcast’s third quarter financial results.
“The bar is the highest it’s been in terms of M&A … We feel really great about that opportunity to look at things, but we really like the company we’ve got,” Roberts told analysts amid a backdrop of Hollywood deal-making following the Discovery-WarnerMedia merger. (His Warner Bros. Discovery rival, David Zaslav, told staff at a September town hall that WBD is “absolutely not for sale.”)
Comcast president and CFO Michael Cavanagh echoed Roberts’ comments around deal-making when it came to possible acquisitions, big or small. “We like the business we have. With all the opportunities we have in the businesses, and the stock where it is, I see us very focused on the opportunities in the business,” Cavanagh told analysts on the call.
Speculation over a potential NBCUniversal-Paramount Global merger was raised when Comcast unveiled an agreement to form the SkyShowtime joint venture with Paramount in more than 20 European markets to roll out a joint streaming service.
“We’re excited about putting money, first and foremost, back into our businesses to drive great results for years to come,” Cavanagh argued as Comcast continues to invest in Peacock, its streaming platform, theme parks and plans for more share buybacks for investors.
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