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The BBC's Denise Mahoney reports
"It will re-invent television and the possibilities are endless"
 real 28k

BBC's Rory Cellan Jones reports
"Shockwaves from the merger are already being felt around the business world"
 real 28k

The BBC's Richard Quest
"Putting these two companies together means huge gains for both"
 real 28k

Steve Case and Gerald Levin
"This is an enormous international opportunity"
 real 28k

Alan Stevens, Editor of Which? Online
"The mantra of 'content is king' has always been issued on the Internet"
 real 28k

Steve Case, Gerald Levin
AOL - Time Warner news conference
 real 28k

Tuesday, 11 January, 2000, 13:44 GMT
Shares soar as giants merge

Steve Case (left) and Gerald Levin sealed the AOL Time Warner deal

Shares in media and internet firms around the world are surging in the wake of the AOL - Time Warner merger deal.
AOL/Time Warner Special Report

The merger of internet giant America Online and media conglomerate Time Warner is expected to dramatically transform both industries, and analysts expect that it will trigger a spate of similar old media/new media tie-ups.

It has sparked a frenzy to snap up shares of other media and internet companies as speculators wonder who might be next.

Other internet companies, with money to spend, will be looking round for potential partners.

The world's first fully-integrated media and communications company for the internet century
AOL Time Warner

And investors are doing the same.

On the Dow Jones, Yahoo! shares were up by more than 5%, Walt Disney by more than 11%, Viacom more than 5% and Lycos by more than 7%.

Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation saw its share prices rise 28% on the Sydney stock exchange.

On Asian stock markets, media and technology stocks like Sony and Fujitsu were buoyant as well.

In London, the share price of Granada and Pearson gained strongly.

The strength of such stocks is in stark contrast with other share prices around the world. The major Asian and European stock markets have gone on the slide again, despite the records set by Wall Street on Monday.

The world's largest merger

The 350bn size of the new company makes this the largest merger in history.

This is an historic moment in which new media has truly come of age
Steve Case
AOL chairman
Some analysts analysts believe that the combined AOL-Time Warner valuation could climb as high as $500bn.

The company, to be known as AOL Time Warner, is billed as "the world's first fully integrated media and communications company for the internet century".

Both companies agreed to embark immediately on a programme of intensive cross-promotion, pushing Time Warner content through AOL channels.

Old media meets new media

This strategic combination with AOL accelerates the digital transformation of Time Warner
Gerald Levin
Time Warner chairman
If the deal goes through, it will make a dramatic impact on both the media and the online services industries.

Online firms are fighting hard to get attractive content onto their sites. Media companies, meanwhile, are struggling to harness the power of the internet.

Time Warner describes itself as one of the world's leading media companies. It owns the cable television channels CNN. TNT, Cartoon Network and Home Box Office and is a publisher of magazines, books and web sites.

Time and People are amongst its best-known magazines.

The company is active in the music business, produces feature films, television programmes and animation, and operates a cable business.

Founded in 1985, AOL has transformed itself from an online service to a provider of interactive services, Internet technologies and e-commerce services.

The company runs two global online services, AOL with more than 20 million members, and CompuServe, with more than 2.2 million members.

In 1999, AOL shocked the online world when it bought internet pioneer Netscape.

AOL has a strategic alliance with computer and software firm Sun Microsystems, targeted at undermining the dominance of Microsoft in the computer business.

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See also:
10 Jan 00 |  Business
The first 'clicks-and-mortar' company
10 Jan 00 |  Business
AOL: The internet company that grew up
10 Jan 00 |  Business
Time Warner: An entertainment blue chip
10 Jan 00 |  Business
Q&A: Merger shakes up the net
24 Nov 98 |  Sci/Tech
AOL everywhere with Netscape deal
29 Oct 98 |  Americas
AOL tells of Microsoft 'threat'
11 Jan 00 |  Business
Steve Case: Master salesman

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