Continuing its drive to pay down debt, AT&T announced that WarnerMedia has completed the sale-leaseback of its sparkling New York City headquarters at 30 Hudson Yards to a consortium for about $2.2 billion.
The initial agreement to sell off the assets was revealed last April.
WarnerMedia’s lease at 30 Hudson Yards runs through early 2034. AT&T said it will use proceeds from this transaction, along with other planned sales of the company’s non-core assets, to reduce its debt.
Hudson Yards, a massive new development along the Hudson River on Manhattan’s far west side, is the city’s most sweeping new set of buildings and corporate homes since Rockefeller Center was built in the 1930s.
Entering this year, the company was one of the most indebted non-financial institutions in the country, with about $170 billion in long-term debt, much of it stemming from the acquisition of Time Warner. The company has been whittling away at the debt load, focusing on the efficiencies it signaled to investors from the beginning of the Time Warner acquisition, which took more than two years to emerge from a bog of government scrutiny.
Since February, when the Department of Justice abandoned its appeal of a lawsuit aiming to block the merger, WarnerMedia has been in non-stop transition mode. A top-to-bottom restructuring has broken down the walls that used to separate Turner, HBO and Warner Bros. and seen an exodus of veteran executive talent. A streaming service, launching in beta by the end of 2019 and more fully in early 2020, is a priority.
The Hudson Yards headquarters consolidates previously far-flung operations, bringing employees from Columbus Circle, Bryant Park and elsewhere under one roof.