Cable Giant Comcast To Acquire Time Warner Cable
Joe Raedle/Getty ImagesA customer associate speaks with a customer on the phone at a Comcast cable call center in Miramar, Fla.
Comcast is considering spinning off the 3 million subscribers it has offered to divest as part of its proposed $45.2 billion takeover of Time Warner Cable, into a publicly traded company, according to sources familiar with the matter.

The sources, who didn't want to be named because the plans are private, said that Comcast hadn't yet made a decision and this is just one option it is considering. Comcast (CMCSA) (CMCSK) has said it is willing to divest 3 million subscribers to reduce U.S. regulators' competitive concerns.

Comcast has said it plans to submit documents on its proposed Time Warner Cable (TWC) acquisition to U.S. regulators by the end of March, when antitrust and public interest reviews will begin.
The deal has drawn concern from consumer advocates and some lawmakers who worry that the new company's size would give it too much power to decide what Americans can watch on TV and do online.

Comcast may sell the cable systems -- whose location has yet to be determined -- to a strategic buyer but a spinoff may be more tax efficient to shareholders of the combined company, the person added.

Bloomberg first reported the news of the potential spinoff Friday.

The sources told Reuters that a spinoff was only one of several possibilities for the subscribers it needs to divest as part of the deal, which a second source said have already attracted interest from potential buyers.

It is not even clear whether the final number of subscribers to be divested will be the same as the three million initially mentioned, the second source said.

Liberty Media Chief Executive Greg Maffei said Friday that Charter Communications (CHTR) would consider buying the subscribers Comcast is looking to divest. Liberty Media (LMCA) owns 27 percent of Charter.

Representatives from Charter and Time Warner Cable declined to comment while Comcast didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

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It doesn't really matter one iota what happens in this proposed merger, cable customers will still have only one choice in the area where they live. Here in upstate NY, I have a choice between Time-Warner, Time-Warner, and Time-Warner. When I lived in one part of Vermont, my choice was between Comcast, Comcast, and Comcast. And in another part of Vermont, it was betweeen Charter, Charter, and Charter. The cable companies have effectively eliminated any pretense of competition by dividing up the entire country into "their" areas of service, and in those areas, that one particular cable company is the only one offering services. So what's the big deal, no one has any choice right now anyway!!!

March 03 2014 at 8:04 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Warren Buffett is on here again giving investment advice and offering an investment letter.
He doesn't even know what a megabyte is. Buffett is very good at drawing attention away from
his insurance business with colorfull stories about furniture firm aquisitions from grandmas etcetera while GEICO cranks out an ad every three seconds (15 percent in 15 minutes, hoot owls, disgusting lizzard thing with an English accent, and more).
Berkshire Hathaway is a place for Buffett to park his never ending insurance income.
Did you know that less than 1% of all life insurance customers ever collect ? Or that less than 3% of all automotive insurance customers ever make a claim ?

March 03 2014 at 7:21 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Hey their Boski

If regulators allow this merger to happen then everything is wrong in this country. What ever happened to the free market, to say that Direct TV and Dish are options is not comparing apples to apples since reception with satillite systems is still sketchy at best. By allowing this merger we will be one step closer to a communication system that has only one voice, that would be the voice of NBC/Universal. Talk about brain washing what people see and hear, this is step one.

March 03 2014 at 7:10 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Comcast couldn't care less about customers. I think you have to pass an idiot test to work there. If Comcast were the last provider of telecommunications services and offered it to me for free for life, I would say "NO THANKS!".

March 03 2014 at 7:01 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Programing choice is now in the SMITHSONIA with ZENITH.

March 03 2014 at 6:48 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

screw them...cut the cable!

March 03 2014 at 6:44 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply