AT&T Reaches Renewal Agreement with Viacom

After negotiating throughout the weekend, AT&T and Viacom announced Monday morning that they had reached an agreement to renew their carriage agreement.

Details of the deal were not immediately available, so it was not clear how much Viacom would be paid under the new contract, or which networks would be available to subscribers to AT&T’s outlets, including DirecTV.

The old agreement expired Friday, but the networks remained available to AT&T subscribers while the two sides continued to talk.

At stake had Viacom not reached a deal with AT&T, the largest pay-TV distributors in the U.S. was what analysts estimated to be subscriber fees of about $1 billion and ad revenue of about $1 billion.

For AT&T the risk was that without Viacom channels like Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and BET, DirecTV would lose subscribers at an even faster rate than it is presently.

In a statement the two companies said:

“We are pleased to announce a renewed Viacom-AT&T contract that includes continued carriage of Viacom services across multiple AT&T platforms and products. The deal also brings AT&T customers more choice and improved value for Viacom content. We expect to announce additional details in the near future.”

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.