Analyst says media mergers are imminent


A spate of media mergers will follow the March 2 federal appeals court decision striking down the FCC's cable ownership caps, predicts Precursor Group analyst Scott Cleland.

By casting doubt on the cable caps, as well as other media ownership limits, the court's action likely will lead the FCC to eliminate or ease many of the restrictions now preventing many companies from moving forward, he said. Cleland also put odds on what would be some very high profile mergers indeed: AT&T + Cox or another big cable operator, 70%, NewsCorp/Fox + DirecTV, 80%; Disney/ABC or Viacom/CBS+Echostar, 80%; any of the Big 4 net owners + Yahoo! 80%; any combo of two of the Big 4 network owners, 60%. - Bill McConnell