HBO, Max, needs AT&T to compete in the streaming wars, and WarnerMedia exec says

LOS ANGELES (reuters) – The future of HBO and Max streaming, to the reach of the parent company AT&T Inc (T. N), in order to compete in the streaming video wars, a senior WarnerMedia executive, said in an interview that when the company is facing pressure from an activist investor to put a media strategy.

FILE PHOTO: HBO logo will appear on the display during an Apple event in San Francisco, California, USA, March 9, 2015. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

HBO, Max, is scheduled to be launched next year, it will be the combination of the network of acclaimed programming such as “Game of Thrones” with the Warner Bros. movies, classic TV shows such as “Friends,” and the original program. The aim of this is to compete with companies such as Netflix Inc (NFLX.(O) the Walt Disney Co. (DIS.N) and Apple Inc (AAPL.(O) to a wider audience.

WarnerMedia will be able to enter the market in the service of the tens of millions of customers to AT&T wireless, DirecTV, and tv services, and to introduce them to programming, Robert Greenblatt, the chairman of the WarnerMedia, Entertainment, and Direct-to-Consumer, he said late on Tuesday.

“In this new world we live in, I think, unless you can see the scale of it, and unless you are able to reach millions and millions and millions and millions of people, I don’t think you have to really have a chance,” Greenblatt said.

“We have a company of this size and scale for a huge number of customers,” Greenblatt said. “The whole thing is just a big plus for us.”

Netflix reported almost 152 million paid subscriptions by the end of June. Apple Inc’s (AAPL.(O) plans to offer its TV service, Apple TV, free of charge for one year to anyone who buys a new Apple device, which allows the programming of the front end of a potential 130 million iPhone users alone, according to Wall Street estimates.

HBO has 140 million subscribers worldwide, most often by means of pay-tv services such as DirecTV and Comcast Corp’s (CMCSA.(O) the company has said. At least 5 million subscribers are digital customers in the United States of america.

Greenblatt said, ” AT&T could offer incentives to customers that will bring them to COLLEGE with Max, hopefully, right away.” He said details will be announced later.

AT&T has said that they will be more than 170 million in direct relationship with the customer by means of a TELEVISION, a direct dial telephone and high-speed broadband services. It also operates 5,500 stores.

WarnerMedia the company was formerly known as Time Warner, owner of HBO, CNN, Warner Bros TELEVISION and film studios, and other entertainment features. AT&T is bought by Time Warner last year.

Elliott Management Corp., which disclosed a large stake in AT&T earlier this month, has argued that AT&T has “failed to articulate a clear strategic rationale for the acquisition.

AT&T executives continue to push for a major push into entertainment with the company’s Chief Operating Officer, John Stankey, Greenblatt said.

“I don’t have anything but 100% confidence in my management and by AT&T that this is the way to go,” he said.

“It was in the independent,” he added. “Now, John Stankey, the run of the show, and now that we’re all one company, and there is a huge amount of co-operation.”

FILE PHOTO: the logo of The company, AT&T, which is shown on a display on the first floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York city, USA-September 18, 2019 at the latest. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

HBO-Max and makes its debut in the United States of america. The company also has plans to expand into international markets over the next few years, Greenblatt said.

WarnerMedia plans to reveal more details about the strategy during a Jan. 29 in the event the investor.

“You see, at that time, the true depths to which this company has been started and committed to it,” Greenblatt said. “They really are in order to win.”

Reporting by Lisa Richwine; Editing by Kenneth Li and Lisa Shumaker

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