AT&T Chief Executive Officer John Stankey Updates Shareholders
John Stankey, chief executive officer of AT&T Inc.* (NYSE:T), spoke recently at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference where he provided an update on the company’s operational and capital allocation strategies.
Focus on strategic growth opportunities. Stankey acknowledged the material impact the current economic backdrop has had across multiple industries. He said the subsequent changes in consumer and business behavior have accelerated AT&T’s focus on aligning its business and investments towards key structural trends across several of its end markets. The company’s strategic areas of focus are improving broadband connectivity (fiber, 5G), developing software-based entertainment (HBO Max, AT&T TV) and leveraging WarnerMedia’s legacy of fantastic storytelling to engage consumers and gain insights across multiple distribution points.
Stankey said the company remains focused on its efforts to align its operations to support its strategic objectives while emphasizing customer experience, effectiveness of its engagement efforts and operational efficiency. As part of these efforts, AT&T is enhancing its strategy to increase customer engagement across media and distribution products that drive customer value and align with AT&T’s brand positioning.
Simultaneously, the company is working to optimize the returns of business lines that fall outside of its focus areas. Stankey said this process may lead to further monetization of non-core assets in AT&T’s portfolio. At the end of the second quarter, AT&T had more than $500 billion in assets on its balance sheet, giving it additional opportunities to drive incremental shareholder value.
Network improvements provide the foundation to compete in evolving wireless market. Stankey said that he sees the company as well positioned to compete in a competitive — and evolving — wireless industry. He believes the company’s significant investments over the past few years have contributed to improved network quality and expanded capacity. AT&T was recently named the “Best Wireless Network” for the third year in a row.1 The combination of nationwide 5G with further investment to expand its fiber network, gives the company confidence in its ability to retain its existing customers as well as attract new customers. In addition, Stankey said that he expects the ability to bundle wireless services with HBO Max will further support AT&T’s acquisition and retention efforts since recent activity suggests bundling is helping support uptake of the company’s higher-ARPU unlimited wireless plans.