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AT&T and DirecTV extend merger termination date

With just three days to go, AT&T and DirecTV extended the May 18 termination date of their merger agreement “for a short period of time to facilitate obtaining final regulatory approval required to close the merger.”

The 8K filed by AT&T with the SEC Friday did not define what a “short period of time” was.

The Federal Communications Commission hasn’t restarted its informal 180-day merger review “shot clock.” When FCC paused the clock in March, the AT&T-DirecTV merger was at day 170 of its review.

Both the Department of Justice and the FCC are in the final days of reviewing the merger.

Most of the talk surrounding the merger has focused on conditions. Critics of the deal, including Netflix, Dish, and Cogent, have met with FCC officials suggesting a number of conditions on the deal including that the merged company be forced to provide and market a stand-alone broadband service and agree to comply with the FCC’s open Internet order, which AT&T has challenged in court.

AT&T said during last month’s quarterly conference call with investors that “we are optimistic and continue to believe we’ll close it [the merger] this quarter.”