US telecoms giant AT&T has announced that it will buy entertainment group Time Warner for nearly $86bn (£70bn).
The deal – one of the biggest this year – still needs approval from regulators.
If the takeover goes through, it would combine AT&T’s distribution network with content from the Warner Brothers film studios and the cable TV channels HBO and CNN.
AT&T’s chairman described it as “a perfect match” but critics say it concentrates too much media power.
The deal is likely to be closely scrutinised by US antitrust regulators. AT&T is already the third largest cable TV provider in the US.
Randall Stephenson, who is both chairman and CEO of AT&T, said he did not anticipate any regulatory obstacles, saying any concerns could be overcome if concessions were made.
“This is a perfect match of two companies with complementary strengths who can bring a fresh approach to how the media and communications industry works for customers, content creators, distributors and advertisers,” he said.
An AT&T statement said that aim of the deal was to give customers “unmatched choice, quality, value and experiences that will define the future of media and communications” and the new company would “lead the next wave of innovation in converging media and communications industry”.
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has said if he is elected, he will block the deal.
“It’s too much concentration of power in the hands of too few,” he said on Saturday, before the deal was confirmed.