Just who will succeed Randall Stephenson as CEO of communications giant AT&T has been a hot question since WarnerMedia CEO John Stankey was promoted recently to additional roles of president and COO of AT&T, effective Oct. 1, reporting to Stephenson.
“I’ve been asked a thousand times: is he the heir apparent? Personally, the board hasn’t informed me I’m retiring yet,” Stephenson, who directed AT&T’s massive merger with Time Warner and earlier deals such as buying DirecTV, said at a conference Tuesday in Ne wYork.
“So I take offense at talk of an heir apparent. But I will say if Stankey is successful, he’s in a pretty good position, if he executes this play.”
In a wide-raning talk, Stephenson also discussed Elliott Management’s call for significant changes at the company following a $3.2 billion investment. And he touted AT&T’s forthcoming HBO Max streaming service.
“There are some things in the letter that we’ve looked at and say it makes a lot of sense. And we need to push further and talk about that,” Stephenson told the Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference. “There are some other areas you look at, and it’s not as clear in terms of how it would make sense for us. But these are smart guys, right and they put a lot of ideas into the paper that we need to sit down and engage with them on.”
Stephenson also said HBO Max