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The Philadelphia Story

First up for Comcast’s Brian Roberts in 2024 is the pending deal for the one-third stake in Hulu that Comcast owns, and that Bob Iger has said that Disney will buy.
First up for Brian Roberts in 2024 is the pending deal for the one-third stake in Hulu that Comcast owns, and that Bob Iger has said that Disney will buy. Photo: Kimberly White/Getty Images
William D. Cohan
January 10, 2024

Back in 2001, in my past life as a M&A banker at JPMorgan Chase, I played a modest role advising Brian Roberts on Comcast’s blockbuster $72 billion acquisition of AT&T Broadband, the cable business of AT&T. It was not the easiest asset to unlock: Since AT&T Broadband was a subsidiary of AT&T and not its own publicly traded company, it was not as if Comcast could buy stock in AT&T Broadband and then make an offer for the company. If AT&T decided it didn’t want to sell its cable business, that would pretty much have been the end of the discussion.