AT&T Inc CEO Randall Stephenson has said that last week’s decision by the Department of Justice (DoJ) to appeal the court approval of AT&T’s USD85 billion takeover of Time Warner Inc is unlikely to be successful, telling CNBC: ‘This changes nothing we will be doing over the next 30 days or the next twelve months. We think the likelihood of this thing being reversed and overturned is really remote. The merger is closed. We own Time Warner.’
In handing down his ruling last month, Judge Richard J. Leon of United States District Court in Washington took the unusual step of warning the government not to try to seek a stay, saying it would hurt the defendants, which had already gone through an 18-month regulatory and legal battle for their review. While Judge Leon admitted that an appeal was ‘fair game’, he pointed out that the investigation and legal proceedings had run up a ‘staggering cost’ for both the companies and the government.