Cablevision Systems Corporation has acquired Bresnan Communications.
Bresnan, which is majority owned by Providence Equity Partners, will be acquired under a newly-formed subsidiary of Cablevision, in a transaction valued at $1.365 billion.
The purchase is the result of an auction with competing bids coming from companies like TPG Capital, BC Partners Ltd., Suddenlink Communications, Ascent Media Corp, and Charter Communications, Inc.
Bresnan is the nation’s thirteenth largest MSO with cable operating systems in Colorado, Montana, Wyoming and Utah that pass more than 630,000 homes and serve more than 300,000 basic subscribers. Previous CEO and founder, Bill Bresnan died earlier this year.
Market analysts are saying that the acquisition gives Cablevision “a bigger slice of the burgeoning market for high-speed Internet services, where revenue is expected to rise to $210 billion globally in 2014 from $164 billion in 2009.”
Bresnan will be acquired by a newly-formed, unrestricted subsidiary of Cablevision with standalone financing. The subsidiary is expected to be financed using non-recourse debt of approximately $1 billion and an equity investment by Cablevision of less than $400 million.
BofA Merrill Lynch and Citi have provided commitments for debt financing for this transaction.
The completion of this transaction, which the company expects to happen in late 2010 or early 2011, is subject to certain customary closing conditions, including regulatory approval.
Citi acted as lead financial advisor to Cablevision.
Cablevision President and CEO James L. Dolan said, “We believe the acquisition of Bresnan is an excellent opportunity to leverage Cablevision's strong management team and build shareholder value. The Bresnan team has built an impressive cable business that performs well financially, and we look forward to working to enhance those systems further.”
Cablevision’s Chief Operating Officer Tom Rutledge will oversee the Bresnan properties.
Rutledge commented: “Bresnan is a well-managed company that has invested wisely in its operations and has pursued a strategy which is aligned and quite similar to Cablevision’s. We look forward to building on Bresnan’s record by pursuing among other things: broader deployment of digital voice; the addition of more high-definition television offerings; the expansion of our groundbreaking Triple Play offer; and, the rollout of new services that have already shown great promise.”
“Since the early days of our industry, the Bresnan name has stood for exceptional performance and an unflinching commitment to customers, colleagues and community,” said Jeffrey S. DeMond, Bresnan’s President and CEO. “I could not be more proud of our team’s accomplishments, nor more appreciative of the support of our great partners. Bill Bresnan would have agreed, and I speak for the entire family of Bresnan employees in expressing our confidence that Bresnan will enjoy continued success as part of the Cablevision family of companies.”
Upon completion of the Bresnan transaction, Cablevision will gain advanced cable systems serving more than 300,000 basic subscribers through the delivery of services, including digital television, high-speed Internet and voice, across an upgraded fiber-optic coaxial network.
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