AT&T's share price skyrocketed Monday following the completion of its merger with Discovery last week. The stock climbed by nearly 8% during the first trading session after it completed the transaction.
The telecommunications company's stock price rose by about 7.7% to $19.63 per share Monday, while the new company Warner Bros. Discovery Inc. saw its share price had jumped by 1.3% to $24.78 per share.
Discovery and AT&T announced last Friday that they had finally closed the merger deal with Warner Media. Under the deal, AT&T would receive $40.4 billion in cash. The new company began trading on the Nasdaq Monday under the ticker symbol "WBD."
AT&T stockholders got 0.241917 WBD shares for each AT&T share owned, for a total of 1.7 billion WBD shares, or 71% of the total. AT&T shareholders still own the same number of shares of AT&T common stock as they did before the closing of the merger deal.
The two companies initially announced their intention to merge and establish a separate media company in May of last year, with AT&T hoping to focus more on its wireless goals and Discovery looking to expand its content collection.
Discovery Channel and Warner Bros. are part of Warner Bros. Discovery's portfolio. It now also owns Entertainment, CNN, HBO, Cartoon Network; streaming services Discovery+ and HBO Max; and "Batman" and "Harry Potter" franchises, to name a few.
David Zaslav, the CEO of the new company and a long-time Discovery veteran, said the merger marks an "exciting milestone" for not just the two companies but also for stakeholders and consumers worldwide. He added that the merger means that Warner Bros. Discovery can offer consumers a complete portfolio of content across different mediums such as film, streaming, and television.
Discovery+ and HBO Max are planned to combine into a single service, but for the time being, it will operate as a bundle akin to Disney+/Hulu/ESPN+. HBO Max and Discovery+ will be bundled together, bringing together two powerful content libraries with valuable IP and a diverse range of material that Netflix has worked hard to develop over the years. Subscribers will get access to over 100 brands and around 200,000 hours of programming.
The newly established media company is now one of the industry's most powerful players, with a market value estimated to be between $45 billion and $60 billion. This puts it in the third position, after Disney and Netflix, with market values worth $240 billion and $161 billion, respectively.