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Paul Allen’s Charter Acquires Bresnan Cable for $3.1bn

Paul Allen’s Charter Acquires Bresnan Cable for $3.1bn

Charter Communications Inc, the Paul Allen-owned cable company, has agreed to yet another acquisition, this time a $3.1bn deal to take control of Bresnan Communications Inc. The deal will be paid for by a mixture of cash and equity. Bresnan, which has a cable television network of 690,000 subscribers, operates mainly in Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Nebraska.

Bresnan was founded in 1984 by William J Bresnan, a cable pioneer, previously chairman and CEO of Westinghouse Electric Corp’s Group W Cable Inc, at the time the largest cable company in the US. But Bresnan and his affiliates own only 10% of the company. AT&T Co’s Broadband and Internet Services division, previously Tele-Communications Inc, holds a 50% stake. The other 40% was acquired by Blackstone Capital Partners III earlier this year. AT&T’s share will be reduced to below 5% as a result of the acquisition.

Charter is now the fourth largest cable operator in the US, behind AT&T Co, Time Warner Inc and Comcast Corp. The Bresnan acquisition takes the number of subscribers it has from 5.5m up to 6.2m.

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