WarnerMedia to merge with Discovery

Two major US media companies are merging to form what they call "a new global leader in entertainment."

WarnerMedia and Discovery are aiming to boost their streaming services to meet growing demand for online content amid the pandemic.

WarnerMedia's parent firm and telecom giant AT&T made the announcement on Monday. AT&T will hold 71 percent of the new company's shares.

WarnerMedia owns CNN, HBO and Warner Bros. Discovery provides science, nature and cooking programming through its Discovery Channel.

The announcement says the merging firms will accelerate their plans for "leading direct-to-consumer streaming services."

The move is seen as a way for WarnerMedia and Discovery to play catch-up in the streaming business.

They're behind their competitors in tapping demand from people spending more time at home during the pandemic.

Netflix boasts over 200 million users worldwide...and Disney+ more than 100 million.

AT&T bought WarnerMedia in 2018. The parent firm is reviewing its strategy of integrating telecom and media operations.

It apparently plans to increase its investment in 5G and other communication technologies.