Former Verizon (NYSE:VZ) Wireless CEO Denny Strigl on Thursday told FOX Businessâ€™ Neil Cavuto that AT&Tâ€™s (NYSE:T) proposed acquisition of Time Warner (NYSE:TWX) will most likely receive approval from the U.S. government, allowing the deal to move forward.
â€œI think the deal goes through Neil, yeah. My guess is there will be some limitations, some restrictions, some side agreements that are reached. Itâ€™s unconceivable to me that the deal doesnâ€™t go through,â€ Strigl said on FOX Businessâ€™ â€œCavuto: Coast-to-Coast.â€
The Department of Justice (DOJ) reportedly informed AT&T that it would block the $85 billion takeover of Time Warner unless it sells off DirecTV or CNN, a network frequently criticized by President Trump.
Strigl, who has worked on over 100 acquisitions with the DOJ, said he doesnâ€™t believe that the sale of CNN as a condition of approving the deal is coming from the president.
â€œThere must be something that really concerns them and their career people at the DOJ,â€ he said.
|VZ||VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS INC.||38.48||+0.43||+1.14%|
|GE||GENERAL ELECTRIC CO.||121.53||-0.97||-0.79%|
AT&T chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson said in a statement that the telecommunications giant has â€œno intentionâ€ of selling CNN.
â€œUntil now, we've never commented on our discussions with the DOJ,â€ Stephenson said on Wednesday. "But given DOJ's statement this afternoon, it's important to set the record straight. Throughout this process, I have never offered to sell CNN and have no intention of doing so."
Strigl said the AT&T-Time Warner deal and the acquisition of NBCUniversal by Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) are closely related because of the conditions attached by the DOJ.
â€œ[Comcast] agreedâ€¦that the content that flows through Comcast would be treated in the same wayâ€ as competitors of NBCUniversal, he said.
Comcast acquired full ownership of NBCUniversal in 2013, when it bought out General Electric (NYSE:GE) for $16.7 billion.