AT&T sells European business for $1.1 billion

(Image: AT&T/Graphic: The Desk)

Telecom giant AT&T has sold its stake in Central European Media Enterprises (CME), the operator of several Eastern European television networks, for $1.1 billion, the company announced on Tuesday.

The move is part of a broader effort at the communications company to divest its non-core assets, something it hopes will “drive incremental shareholder value,” an AT&T spokesperson said in a statement.

AT&T was the largest shareholder of CME, acquiring it as part of the company’s merger with Time Warner in 2018. CME operates television channels in Bulgaria, Czeck Republic, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenian, none of which carry domestic WarnerMedia branding.

A Czech investment firm called PPF Group, N.V. acquired AT&T’s stake in CME for $1.1 billion in cash, a spokesperson said.

The move continues an initiative within AT&T to sell off elements of its business that are weighing down the company’s debt. In recent months, news reports indicated AT&T was looking to divest itself of Crunchyroll and satellite TV service DirecTV among other businesses.

The company will announce its third quarter financial results later this month.

Disclosure: As of the publication date, the author of this story owned stock in AT&T.

Thanks for reading and supporting The Desk. If you have a question, comment or news tip, send a message by email or text, or connect on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Also, check out our new membership service The Desk: Pro Access for exclusive reporting, news scoops and in-depth analysis.