Cable Technology Feature Article
Liberty Merges with OneLink for Optimized User Satisfaction
By Tabitha Naylor, Contributing Writer
The purchase by Liberty Puerto Rico of cable TV, Internet and telephony provider OneLink (News - Alert) Communications has been authorized by Puerto Rico’s Telecommunications Regulatory Board (JRT). Last June, an agreement which controls OneLink, involving a figure close to $585 million, was signed by Liberty Global (News - Alert) and the multinational investment group of MidOcean Partners and Crestview Partners.
“This transaction makes us the leading provider of cable services in Puerto Rico, to about 70 percent of cable households on the island, and substantially increases our existing operations here,” said Mauricio Ramos, president of Liberty Global Latin America, in a statement.
Liberty will become Liberty Cablevision Puerto Rico with the merger of OneLink. Its operations will also be doubled since the 37 municipalities in the region east and north where it already provides cable TV services, Internet and telephony. Additionally, it will be joined by the eight municipalities of the metropolitan region in which it operates OneLink.
Ramos added that generating nearly $ 300 million in pro forma 2011 revenues, this will give approximately 700,000 homes and 480,000 subscribers reach. After approval was given by JRT which proceeded by a favorable decision by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC (News - Alert)), Naji Khoury, CEO of Liberty Cablevision, told El Nuevo Dia newspaper that for subscribers to OneLink, the transaction was very good news.
Khoury added that in order to develop infrastructure and improve the services provided in its respective regions, the merger will be accompanied with an investment plan, aiming to replicate OneLink with Liberty.
Among these investments, under DOCSIS 3.0, Liberty plans to update its network. To allow existing OneLink customers access to Internet bundled services up to 30Mbps download and 2Mbps upload, it aims to deploy fiber to homes in the region. Creating a better balance of programmes in both English and Spanish, and digital telephony, it will provide 352 pay TV channels and 75 HD channels.
Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli