Warner Bros. Discovery and AT&T each ended the trading week with their respective shares selling at a 3% increase from where the stocks opened Monday.
The newly formed Warner Bros. Discovery, born out of the $43 billion merger of Discovery, Inc. and WarnerMedia last Friday, started its first day on the Nasdaq at $24.08 per share. By the time the stock market closed Thursday — a day earlier than usual for Wall Street, due to the holiday weekend — WBD stock was at $24.88.
Warner Bros. Discovery’s combined assets include Warner Bros. film studio, HBO, TNT and CNN as well as Food Network, HGTV, TLC and Animal Planet. The hope behind the merger is that the wider scale of the offerings will make the conglomerate better able to compete with the likes of Netflix and Disney and will bolster their streaming services.
Meanwhile, AT&T, the telecom giant that off-loaded WarnerMedia to Discovery after four tumultuous years, was at $19.54 per share when the bell rang yesterday, compared to the $18.89 it opened at on Monday.
At various points during the week, both hit higher prices, with AT&T reaching $19.77 per share Tuesday morning and Warner Bros. Discovery coming in at $27.24 on Wednesday afternoon.
This first week of business for Warner Bros. Discovery was a busy one for CEO David Zaslav, who acted in the same position at the solo Discovery. On Monday, the media mogul began his day saying hello to WarnerMedia employees at the company’s Hudson Yards office in New York. Later that day he headed down to D.C. for dinner with some CNN correspondents before going to CNN headquarters in Atlanta on Tuesday. But Thursday was the biggest day of all for Zaslav, as he sat down for his first company-wide address, which was a town hall moderated by longtime friend and business partner Oprah Winfrey.
Winfrey, whose OWN is a joint venture between her Harpo Productions and Discovery of which Discovery owns 95%, conducted a one-on-one chat with Zaslav that was watched by employees on the Warner Bros. lot and staffers tuning in virtually around the globe. Insiders say the event felt more like an introduction to their new boss, and less an informative presentation that answered questions about how Zaslav plans to find some $3 billion in synergies within the new company.