AT&T moving entertainment jobs out of Atlanta

An AT&T spokesman confirmed plans to move jobs from Atlanta to LA and Dallas but declined to give details. (Photo Illustration by Tim Boyle/Getty Images)
An AT&T spokesman confirmed plans to move jobs from Atlanta to LA and Dallas but declined to give details. (Photo Illustration by Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

AT&T is moving several hundred jobs out of metro Atlanta and shifting them to Los Angeles and Dallas.

The company confirmed Thursday that it plans the transfer but declined to offer details or to explain the reasons.

“Our Entertainment Group will be moving a few hundred managerial jobs from Atlanta to Los Angeles and Dallas,” Lance Skelly, an AT&T spokesman in Atlanta, said in a statement. “The vast majority of our nearly 20,000 Georgia employees are not affected.”

About half those workers are in metro Atlanta, where wireless unit AT&T Mobility is based.

The company did not say what kinds of jobs are being shifted or when the move will happen. Skelly also declined to say if AT&T move was a commentary on Atlanta’s technology sector.

“Unfortunately, the statement … is all we really have available at this time,” he wrote in an email.

Larry Williams, president and chief executive of the Technology Association of Georgia, praised AT&T as a “part of the fabric of our technology community for decades.”

TAG has been a leading cheerleader for growth in tech jobs, as well as for the cluster of research centers that companies have been developing around Georgia Tech. Work in and around Atlanta is fueling the “convergence” of different technologies in music as well as television and film, he said.

He said he doesn’t see AT&T’s decision to move the entertainment jobs as being in conflict with “the narrative” of Atlanta and expressed confidence in the future.

“It is a great time for the technology industry in Georgia,” he said. “I think we’ll continue to grow in important ways.”

AT&T last year had revenue of $163.8 billion. The company this week announced revenue for the more recent quarter of about $39 billion.

The company, based in Dallas, last year announced plans for an $85 billion acquisition of Time Warner, parent of Atlanta-based Turner and its various cable TV, internet and other businesses. The deal awaits review by federal regulators.

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