DIRECTV Company Brief

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Company Brief

by Faulkner Staff

Docid: 00016353

Publication Date: 2109

Report Type: VENDOR


DIRECTV, which spent the better part of a decade as part of AT&T thanks to a $48.5 billion acquisition in
2015, has once again been spun off into a separate, independent entity which
also includes AT&T’s U-Verse and AT&T TV business. The DIRECTV portion of this
entity is a leading provider of digital television
entertainment services. Through its subsidiaries and affiliated companies in the
United States, Brazil, Mexico, and other Latin American countries, DIRECTV
provides digital television service to more than 20 million customers.

Report Contents:

Fast Facts

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2230 East Imperial Hwy
El Segundo, CA 90245
Phone: (800) 531-5000
Type: DBS Service Provider
Service Areas: US, Latin America
Founded: 1990


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DIRECTV (DTV) is one of the world’s leading provider of digital television
entertainment services. It provides digital television service to more than 20 million customers in the United
States and Latin America. 

DIRECTV, a digital television entertainment service, was founded in 1990 as a unit of Hughes Electronics. The
company began services in June 1994 and became the first national DBS
service to offer digital-quality programming to sites equipped with direct satellite service
systems. In the late 1990s, a series of acquisitions enabled DIRECTV to
combine satellite services and add on to its market share in satellite
television. In 2003, General Motors completed the $6.6 billion sale of its
Hughes Electronics unit, the parent of DIRECTV, to News Corp. Three years
later, News Corp agreed to swap Liberty Media’s interest in News Corp for
News Corp’s interest in DIRECTV, three sports networks, and $588 million cash. This would put DIRECTV under Liberty Media’s control.
DIRECTV launched local public television stations in HD throughout
the US in 2008. DIRECTV Group and Liberty Media agreed to combine DIRECTV
Group with Liberty Entertainment (LEI) in 2009. AT&T announced in 2014
that it would acquire DIRECTV in a transaction valued at $48.5 billion. The
acquisition was finalized in 2015. 

Key Executives

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Chairman and CEO, AT&T: John T. Stankey

CEO DirecTV: Bill Morrow

Major Products

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To receive DIRECTV satellite TV programming, customers choose a satellite dish antenna and
a receiver that hooks into their television. The dish and receiver, combined with a remote
control, form the DIRECTV system. The dish antenna communicates to the
satellite from which the company beams its programming. The receiver provides
access to local channels, premium movies, sports, family channels, music,
international programming, HDTV, and pay-per-view. DIRECTV has base and premium
packages, as well as sports subscriptions, Spanish-language programming, and
business services.

Table 1 includes highlights of programming packages offered by DIRECTV.


Table 1. Select DIRECTV Programming Packages
Service Description

DIRECTV’s next tiered package offers more than 160 channels. Includes all local networks, family and children’s networks,
sports networks, news, and entertainment channels. Package includes an HD DVR.


The next level of DIRECTV’s programming packages consists of more than 185
channels. Includes all local networks, family and children’s networks,
sports networks, regional sports networks, news, and entertainment channels. NFL Sunday Ticket
and a Genie DVR are included.

With Ultimate, customers receive more than 250 channels — everything in the
Xtra package — including additional movie channels. NFL Sunday Ticket
and a Genie DVR are included.

Offers more than 330 channels. Programming includes all premium movie channels
and specialty sports networks. NFL Sunday Ticket, a Genie DVR, and HBO, STARZ,
Showtime, and Cinemax are included.

DIRECTV for Business

DIRECTV provides programming options for multiple business environments. The
company provides satellite programming for hotels, hospitals, dorms, and senior
living. In addition, the company delivers programming to
bars and restaurants, offices, and public business viewing areas, such as
fitness clubs.


Bundled together are services for TV programming, Internet, home phone, and
wireless services.

Major Competitors

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Cox Communications:
Dish Network:

Recent Activity

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In August 2021, AT&T completed its plans (announced in February 2021) to spin
DIRECTV, as well as its U-Verse and AT&T TV brand off into an independent
entity.1 This transaction netted AT&T a total of $7.8 billion in
cash, including a $1.8 billion investment from TPG Capital, which now owns a 30
percent stake in the new entity. AT&T retains the remaining 70 percent of
ownership. It claims the transition is not expected to have any significant
impact to customers of any of the included services or brands.

Later in the same month, the spun-off company announced that the AT&T TV and
AT&T TV Now product lines would be united under a newly created DIRECTV STREAM
brand that will include all of both offerings’ "live and streaming


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1 Dade Hayes "AT&T Completes DirecTV Spinoff…." Deadline.
August 2, 2021.

2 Cattie Keck. "AT&T TV will officially become DirecTV Stream Next Week."
August 19, 2021.

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