Seeking Alpha

Comcast Corporation (CMCSA)

  • Wed, Oct. 28, 7:55 PM
    | Wed, Oct. 28, 7:55 PM | 3 Comments
  • Tue, Oct. 27, 8:28 PM
    • IBM is nearing a deal in excess of $2B to acquire the digital and data assets of The Weather Co., owner of the Weather Channel, The Wall Street Journal is reporting.
    • The company -- owned in part by NBCUniversal (NASDAQ:CMCSA) along with Bain Capital and Blackstone (NYSE:BX) -- started hiring banks to seek a buyer in August for a deal it hoped would hit $3B. The company's digital bits were widely considered to be the most valuable.
    • IBM has a particular interest in the company's forecasting group, WSI, the WSJ says -- a unit that's chock full of tech and weather data that the Weather Co. licenses to various businesses.
    • The deal would reportedly come with Weather Co. CEO David Kenny, who would join IBM.
    • A $2B deal would be a discount over the company's 2008 sale price, valued at $3.5B. IBM shares fell 4.1% today.
    • Previously: IBM eyes digital assets of The Weather Company (Oct. 19 2015)
    • Previously: Weather Channel hires banks to explore sale for up to $3B (Aug. 20 2015)
    | Tue, Oct. 27, 8:28 PM | 51 Comments
  • Wed, Oct. 21, 4:18 PM
    • Comcast (CMCSA -0.7%) is inching toward introducing its own wireless service, triggering part of a 2012 airwaves deal that lets it resell Verizon's (NYSE:VZ) service, Bloomberg reports.
    • Verizon CFO Fran Shammo said during the company's earnings call yesterday that unnamed cable companies had said they'd execute their right to resell Verizon airwaves as part of the deal where Verizon bought spectrum from a cable consortium.
    • Bloomberg says that Comcast plans a hybrid cellular/Wi-Fi service, not unlike Google's Project Fi and which would draw on Comcast's network of Wi-Fi hotspots that may be 10M strong.
    • With notification of Verizon, Comcast could start a market trial within six months and offer it commercially by this time next year.
    • Good for T-Mobile (TMUS -1.2%) either way? The carrier comes up in rumors about a Comcast merger -- though Comcast denied them earlier this year -- but in any cast, a Comcast entry would press the big two of AT&T (NYSE:T) and Verizon more. “This will be bad for the carriers, with the possible exception of T-Mobile, and good for cable,” says New Street Research's Jonathan Chaplin.
    • And T-Mobile chief John Legere has been not-too-subtly dropping lines about a merger with his company: "You really believe that the Comcast future in wireless is to be an MVNO with Verizon? I mean, give me a break."
    • Previously: Legere: T-Mobile will bid in auction; Verizon video a 'debacle' (Sep. 18 2015)
    • Previously: Comcast source denies interest in T-Mobile purchase (Jun. 17 2015)
    | Wed, Oct. 21, 4:18 PM | 9 Comments
  • Mon, Oct. 19, 8:26 AM
    • The Weather Company is in advanced talks with IBM about the sale of its digital assets, Re/code reports, stating that a number of different parties have been discussing the purchase of either parts or all of its assets.
    • Those include: The product and technology division, the television business (with the Weather Channel) and a large meteorological team.
    • The Weather Company is currently owned by the Blackstone Group (NYSE:BX), Bain Capital and NBC Universal (NASDAQ:CMCSA). The trio paid $3.5B for the firm in 2008.
    | Mon, Oct. 19, 8:26 AM | Comment!
  • Mon, Sep. 28, 5:56 AM
    • As leaked a couple of weeks back, Comcast's (NASDAQ:CMCSA) NBCUniversal agreed to the purchase of a majority stake in Universal Studios Japan from Goldman Sachs and other owners of the theme park.
    • “We are excited to expand our global footprint with this wonderful theme park in Osaka,” said Comcast CEO Brian Roberts. “This investment represents a huge opportunity and commitment to creating value for our shareholders and continuing to grow internationally.”
    • Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) currently has a majority stake in USJ, the owner/operator of Universal Studios Japan, with remaining shares held by Japanese P-E firms and a U.S. hedge fund. All will be selling more than half of their holdings to NBCUniversal.
    • The deal is expected to close in November.
    • Source: WSJ
    • Previously: WSJ: NBCUniversal considering buying majority of Universal Studios Japan (Sept. 15)
    | Mon, Sep. 28, 5:56 AM | Comment!
  • Thu, Sep. 17, 11:11 AM
    • Cablevision (NYSE:CVC) is up 15.3%, hitting highs it hasn't seen in more than four years, in the wake of its $17.7B deal to be acquired by France's Altice (OTCPK:ATCEY).
    • Shares are trading at $32.90 against Altice's $34.90/share proposal, though analysts are sounding off largely in consensus that there shouldn't be any regulatory issues with the deal. Altice was up nearly 13% in Amsterdam, but has settled down to a gain of 0.8%.
    • Most analysts rate Cablevision a Hold. The combination doesn't surprise Pivotal's Jeff Wlodarczak, but the price does a bit, considering a willing seller and Altice likely the only bidder; he expected a $32.50/share deal.
    • Wunderlich's Matthew Harrigan was surprised the sale happened with this FCC in place; he expected a deal after a new administration, perhaps to Liberty's John Malone or Charter's (and formerly Cablevision's) Tom Rutledge.
    • Michael McCormack at Jefferies thinks Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) or Charter (NASDAQ:CHTR) could look at getting into the bidding for Cablevision. He says a synergy target of $900M "looks aggressive" and implies some best-in-class margins.
    • Overall, analysts are taking Altice's Patrick Drahi at his word: The company probably isn't done expanding in the U.S. Likely targets could be any number of telecom assets, including private players like Cox or Mediacom, or CLECs.
    | Thu, Sep. 17, 11:11 AM | 1 Comment
  • Wed, Sep. 2, 4:57 PM
    • Prestige studio Miramax, previously rumored to be exploring a sale, has hired Morgan Stanley to find a buyer, Bloomberg reports.
    • Qatari investment bank QInvest will co-advise on the process, which is said to start formally after the Labor Day holiday. The studio is part-owned by Qatar through the country's sovereign wealth fund.
    • Miramax could be looking for up to $1B after its current owners bought it from Disney for $660M in 2010, and bidders could include streaming services like Hulu (CMCSA, DIS, FOX, FOXA), Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) or's Instant Video (NASDAQ:AMZN), or studios like MGM or oft-rumored buyer Lions Gate (NYSE:LGF).
    • Miramax's most recent release is Mr. Holmes, with Ian McKellen as famed detective Sherlock Holmes, and it currently produces From Dusk Till Dawn, the TV adaptation of the film now in its second season on the El Rey network.
    | Wed, Sep. 2, 4:57 PM | 8 Comments
  • Tue, Aug. 25, 2:25 PM
    • Home-focused Web community Houzz is making its first acquisition in GardenWeb, which it's buying from NBCUniversal (CMCSA +1.5%).
    • Terms of the deal weren't disclosed, but GardenWeb originally came to NBCU in 2006, as part of a $600M deal for iVillage when NBCU was still part of GE.
    • Houzz, which has raised more than $200M in funding and was last valued at $2.3B last year, will get millions of discussion threads (with more than 14M discussion posts) in the deal while expanding outside home design to garden design. It's launched its first TV ads this month.
    | Tue, Aug. 25, 2:25 PM | Comment!
  • Thu, Aug. 20, 3:39 PM
    | Thu, Aug. 20, 3:39 PM | 4 Comments
  • Tue, Aug. 18, 4:30 PM
    • Comcast (CMCSA -1.2%) has a deal to acquire This Technology, a multiscreen video company that will help speed its new parent's transition to IP video.
    • Terms were undisclosed. This Technology specializes in dynamic ad insertion and, interestingly, features an alternate content delivery platform that enters play during TV blackouts (such as for sports events).
    • Most of the Denver-based This Technology team will join Comcast's VIPER team in Colorado, with others joining Comcast Wholesale.
    • It's the second significant ad-tech acquisition for Comcast this summer. In June, Comcast announced its deal to acquire Visible World, with an eye surely to highly targeted ZIP code-based ad targeting based on data from set-top boxes.
    | Tue, Aug. 18, 4:30 PM | Comment!
  • Fri, Jul. 24, 4:16 AM
    • Seeking access to younger audiences, Comcast's (NASDAQ:CMCSA) NBCUniversal is scouting out several new media companies for potential deals, WSJ reports.
    • Comcast has engaged in preliminary discussions with several online publishers including Vice Media, BuzzFeed and Business Insider, and has discussed increasing its roughly 14% stake in Vox Media.
    • The talks are all at an early stage and it isn’t clear if any of the deals might come to fruition.
    | Fri, Jul. 24, 4:16 AM | Comment!
  • Fri, Jul. 17, 8:27 PM
    • Miramax, the studio home for prestige films founded by Harvey and Bob Weinstein, is looking for a buyer in a sale it hopes will draw $1B, Bloomberg reports.
    • Investment is coming back to the film sector in a rebound year for movies, and studio owners Colony Capital and Qatar Holding are betting that content-hungry distributors will take an interest in an award-heavy film library, including Oscar winners like Shakespeare in Love, Pulp Fiction and Good Will Hunting.
    • Colony Capital and the Qatar sovereign wealth fund were among the group that bought Miramax from Disney for $660M five years ago.
    • Potential buyers? That could include content-acquisitive streaming services like Hulu (CMCSA, DIS, FOXA), Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) or's Instant Video (NASDAQ:AMZN), or studios like MGM or oft-rumored buyer Lions Gate (NYSE:LGF), says Variety's James Rainey. A price of $1B is too steep for some of them, but with low information, it's tough to put a solid value on Miramax.
    | Fri, Jul. 17, 8:27 PM | 23 Comments
  • Wed, Jul. 8, 9:00 PM
    • With its failed bid for Time Warner Cable fading into memory, Comcast's (NASDAQ:CMCSA) earnings call this month is likely to focus on its performance refocus, growth and other metrics -- including its buyback plans, notes Reinhardt Krause.
    • TWC's sizable cash flows would likely have meant a step-up in stock repurchases by the merged company, while Comcast alone is likely to have mostly used up its existing $10B authorization by the end of the year.
    • In an environment when companies are taking on low-interest debt to fuel buybacks, "With capital intensity decreasing longer term, Comcast could buy back 20% of its market cap in 2015-19 while actually deleveraging," says Barclays' Kannan Venkateshwar.
    • Meanwhile, in M&A, few are expecting Comcast to rebound from the failed TWC deal with more deals. A wireless firm likely isn't in its plans, though an Internet content deal (a la Verizon/AOL) isn't out of the question.
    • New CFO Michael Cavanagh will debut in the July 23 earnings call in a year where the company's TV businesses face pressure even as the stock has hit record highs, with no small help from Universal Studios.
    | Wed, Jul. 8, 9:00 PM | 1 Comment
  • Wed, Jun. 17, 3:45 PM
    | Wed, Jun. 17, 3:45 PM | 9 Comments
  • Wed, Jun. 17, 8:48 AM
    | Wed, Jun. 17, 8:48 AM | 9 Comments
  • Fri, Jun. 12, 5:19 PM
    • Today in telecom consolidation speculation: While Dish Network (NASDAQ:DISH) and T-Mobile (NYSE:TMUS) have been talking about a deal with upsides for both (and shareholders have driven DISH up 2.6%, TMUS up 1.8% since word broke June 3), they aren't each other's only option.
    • And much of what transpires there depends on T-Mo parent Deutsche Telekom (OTCQX:DTEGY) and what it wants to do with an asset that can command top dollar as perhaps the last attainable big U.S. cell provider.
    • “They’re obviously controlled by a German company who has strategic initiatives, both in Europe and the United States, and they may not be in a position where they want to do anything," Dish chief Charlie Ergen said in a Bloomberg TV interview.
    • From Dish's perspective: It doesn't need to rush, as it's making free cash flow and has time to sit on its large spectrum stockpiles yet. Ergen could look for a sale to Verizon (NYSE:VZ), or break the spectrum off into a separate company with a sale-leaseback. In any case, many deals that seemed well under way have been kiboshed by the mercurial Ergen.
    • Fron T-Mobile's: Deutsche Telekom is reportedly worried about an overvalued Dish and getting too much of that stock. T-Mobile could probably command $49/share in a sale, or a 25% premium, says Gabelli's Sergey Dluzhevskiy. One company that wouldn't blink at that price would be Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) in its own quad-play grab.
    • Altice (OTC:ATCEY), which considered a run at Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC), could be a long-shot for T-Mobile, or even Charter (NASDAQ:CHTR). And with AT&T expanding in Mexico, how interesting would it be if América Móvil (NYSE:AMX) pumped up its U.S. presence with Big Magenta?
    | Fri, Jun. 12, 5:19 PM | 6 Comments
Company Description
Comcast Corp is a media and technology company. The Company's business segments are: Cable Communications, Cable Networks, Broadcast Television, Filmed Entertainment, and Theme Parks.
Sector: Services
Industry: CATV Systems
Country: United States