NEW YORK (TheStreet) - John Malone signaled Dish Network (DISH) should merge with DirecTV (DTV) in 2013. Meanwhile, Berkshire Hathaway's (BRK.A) rising investing stars Ted Weschler and Todd Combs are speculated to be the brains behind the company's over $3 billion stake in DirecTV.
Now, those investors could be forced to either support or contest DirecTV's takeover. On Monday evening, the Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg reported AT&T (T) will offer a deal for DirecTV, in a takeover deal that would value the company at around $48 billion at the high-end.
>>Read More: No, Carl Icahn and Warren Buffett Aren't Enemies
Such a move would effectively bolster AT&T's TV presence and help the company expand its wireless service as data usage and network demands continue to rise. Amid an ever-faster pace of consolidation in the telecom, broadband and wireless industry, DirecTV has emerged as one of the prized targets.
Unlike other consolidators in the wireless and telecom sector, DirecTV doesn't have many large hedge fund shareholders who are willing to pick battles with management or an acquirer. Instead, DirecTV has Berkshire as a 7.25% shareholder with a stake worth about $3.2 billion as of Monday's close.
For Berkshire, the deal may be a slightly unfamiliar role. Most of the company's biggest investments such as Wells Fargo (WFC), Coca-Cola (KO), IBM (IBM) and American Express (AXP) are simply beyond the reach of acquirers. The company, itself, also does a fair amount of M&A.