Amazon Inks Proposed $8.45 Billion Deal For MGM, Bolsters Amazon Studios

Amazon has finalized a deal to buy MGM for $8.45 billion, just days after AT&T agreed to spin off another movie studio -- Warners Bros., part of WarnerMedia -- in a new company with Discovery Inc.

The deal would give Amazon a catalog of 4,000 films and 17,000 TV shows to help bolster Amazon Studios, its film and TV division -- as well as Amazon Prime Video.

The storied Hollywood studio is home to James Bond and "Rocky" franchise movies. More currently, for TV, MGM produces "The Handmaid's Tale" (on Hulu), "Survivor" (CBS); and "Shark Tank" (ABC).

Analysts believe this is only the start of a new wave of mega-media deals, which could include movie-studio operations as well as TV networks and their associated digital platforms.

“The next likely scenario is a more aggressive merger or acquisition of one of the remaining traditional assets, like an NBC or ViacomCBS ,” says Scott Schiller, global chief commercial officer at the marketing/media services agency Engine.

Amazon’s stock barely moved in early Wednesday trading -- up 0.34% to $3,270. ViacomCBS stock was up 2.8% to $42.03, while Comcast Corp. (owner of NBCUniversal) was up 3% to $57.36.

For Amazon, the proposed deal would be its second-largest acquisition. It paid $13.7 billion for Whole Foods in 2017.

Amazon spent $11 billion on video and music content in 2020, rising from a total of $7.8 billion in 2019.

Just days before, AT&T made a deal to spin off WarnerMedia to a new combined company with Discovery Inc. for a $43 billion -- with AT&T shareholders controlling 71% of the voting shares of the new company.

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