John Malone’s Liberty Media recently approached Time Warner Cable about a possible merger with Charter Communications, and now the company is reportedly holding exploratory deals with its peers.
According to a Reuters report, executives at Time Warner have been discussing strategic options for a possible acquisition of either Cablevision Systems and Cox Communications, the country’s third-largest cable firm.
The report suggests that Time Warner would rather form its own acquisitions rather that be taken over by Liberty Media, which owns 27.3 percent of the company.
Time Warner has contacted Cablevision and Cox in recent months, but those talks have not progressed. The report does not suggest when those requests to talk began or if further discussions are planned for the company.
If Time Warner Cable is able to carve out a deal with Cablevision, it would pick up a significantly better presence in New York City and the surrounding area. A Cox cable acquisition would extend the company’s reach in California.
The acquisition of either company will likely be met with hurdles because of the control the deal would secure. Cox Cable currently serves 4.5 million subscribers while Cablevision would add 3.2 million customers to the TWC family.
Both Cablevision and Cox are controlled by family interests who have not signaled in any way that they are interested in a marger.
Cox cable systems would allow Time Warner Cable to secure a decent amount of regional sports channels. TWC has spent a good deal of money securing local sports rights for the Los Angeles Dodgers and L.A. Lakers.
In the meantime, Liberty Media and Charter have been in discussions to determine how they can acquire Time Warner after CEO Glenn Britt retires later this year.
The Time Warner talks are occurring at the same time that the company is extending its facilities with the $85 Million Expansion Of National Data Center West.
Do you think a Time Warner acquisition of either Cox or Cablevision would be approved or is it anti-competitive?