Powered by TMCnet
| More

Cable Technology Feature Article

April 29, 2011

Charter Looks for Buyers for Los Angeles Operations

By Ed Silverstein, TMCnet Contributor

Charter Communications (News - Alert) is looking for buyers for its Los Angeles-area operations, according to media reports.

The cable TV provider has some 551,000 subscribers in California, including the Los Angeles market, according to MultiChannel News.

The sale of its assets could raise somewhere between $1.5 billion and $2 billion, The Wall Street Journal said.

Charter may not want to sell the assets if the price offered is less than what the company expects to be paid, The Journal speculates.

Time Warner (News - Alert) Cable may be one of the companies’ interested in Charter’s assets.

Nationally, Charter has some 5 million residential/commercial subscribers in over 25 states. It provides cable TV, phone and broadband services. It has been ranked as the fourth-largest U.S. cable operator, coming in after Comcast (News - Alert), Time Warner and Cox Communications.

Time Warner Cable has some 1.7 million subscribers in the Los Angeles area, The Journal adds.

Time Warner Cable Chief Executive Glenn Britt told The Journal, “It has been rumored and reported in the press that the Charter property is going to come to market. … We're going to evaluate it like we look at all acquisitions… and evaluate it versus other investment alternatives including buying our shares back.”

In addition, Charter Communications selected Goldman Sachs and Citigroup for auction of its Los Angeles operations, according to MultiChannel News.

In 2009, Charter filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and reorganized.

Apollo Global Management purchased most of Charter's debt during the bankruptcy, and owns a part of the equity, The Journal said.

In other recent news about Charter, the company will be partnering with TiVo (News - Alert) to provide a Web TV interface to cable subscribers, TMCnet said.

Charter will provide its customers with a platform that offers traditional cable programs as well as Web-delivered content, on-demand services and third-party applications such as Facebook (News - Alert) and Twitter, TMCnet adds.

Ed Silverstein is a TMCnet contributor. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Jennifer Russell