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Nov. 9, 2015, 8:05 PM
- With the review of Charter Communications' (NASDAQ:CHTR) buyout of Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) proceeding apace at the FCC, the agency is sending requests tied to cable mogul John Malone's holdings not only in Charter but in content companies like Discovery (NASDAQ:DISCA) and Starz (NASDAQ:STRZA), which supply Charter rivals.
- The agency has sent letters to the companies that list Malone as their chairman -- Liberty Media (NASDAQ:LMCA), Liberty Interactive (NASDAQ:QVCA) and Liberty Broadband (NASDAQ:LBRDA), which holds 26% of Charter -- and asked about Malone's influence over those entities as well as the content creators and DirecTV.
- It's a "pretty meaningful request," says BTIG's Rich Greenfield, while Craig Moffett points at the Comcast deal for NBCUniversal in saying that Malone's tangled ownership is "probably not a big issue."
- Malone has a 46.6% voting interest in Liberty Broadband, which would be entitled to vote no more than 25.01% of shares in the new combination, Charter has said. His interests in Discovery and Starz are "minority interests" where he wouldn't control day-to-day decisions.
- The American Cable Association (representing smaller providers) argues that Malone's interests aren't insubstantial and that consumers can expect higher rates unless the FCC imposes conditions on the deal.
- Previously: BTIG: Are TWC, Charter too strong separately to sell merger case? (Nov. 02 2015)
- Previously: Charter call: Talking wireless ambitions, slamming password sharing (Oct. 29 2015)
Oct. 2, 2015, 5:24 PM
- With Liberty Interactive's (QVCA +1.7%) completed deal for Zulily (NASDAQ:ZU), Brean Capital reiterated its Buy rating based on new competitive strength.
- The firm has a price target of $37 on QVCA; 37.8% upside from today's close of $26.86.
- "We view QVC and Zulily as two companies able to compete against Amazon.com for the long term by offering consumers differentiated merchandise," says the firm's Tom Forte.
- "In our view, applying QVC’s best practices to Zulily should assist in that company’s efforts to reignite customer growth. Lastly, we consider the potential for QVC to attract Zulily’s younger customers as a potential added benefit from the transaction and not a necessity for the deal to be considered a success."
- Zulily will continue to be identified by a separate brand for events both online and on the QVC network.
- Previously: Liberty Interactive completes $2.4B Zulily acquisition (Oct. 01 2015)
Oct. 1, 2015, 3:25 PM
- Liberty Interactive (QVCA +0.5%, LVNTA +1.2%) has acquired all the remaining shares of Zulily (NASDAQ:ZU), wrapping its $2.4B deal.
- The deal was completed through a second-step merger of Liberty's Mocha Merger Sub unit into Zulily. Shares of QVCA and cash have been delivered and Zulily's no longer trading.
- Liberty plans to maintain separate brands for QVC and Zulily, and has pointed toward Zulily-branded sales events both on the air and online.
Sep. 15, 2015, 4:11 PM
- The Justice Dept. and FTC have given an early OK to their antitrust review of Liberty Interactive's (NASDAQ:QVCA) $2.4B deal to buy Zulily (NASDAQ:ZU).
- The move, which means the government saw there was no reason to block the deal or impose conditions, clears the way for a Q4 closing. Both boards approved the deal.
- Liberty has said that it will maintain separate brands for QVC and Zulily, which means Zulily-branded on-air and online sales events. Zulily's senior management, including CEO Darrell Cavens, will continue to run that operation, while Zulily Chairman Mark Vadon gets a seat on the Liberty Interactive board.
- After hours: ZU +0.2%; QVCA -0.5%.
Aug. 17, 2015, 8:06 AM
- Liberty Interactive (NASDAQ:LVNTA), (NASDAQ:QVCA) agrees to buy zulily (NASDAQ:ZU) for $18.75 per share - $9.375 in cash and 0.3098 newly issued shares of QVCA. The deal is expected to close in Q4.
- A conference call to discuss the merger is set for 9 ET
- Zulily closed Friday at $12.57.
- Previously: Zulily halted with news pending (Aug. 17)
Jul. 9, 2015, 5:29 PM
- There's been little news coming out of secretive Sun Valley -- where media moguls gather at the Allen & Co. conference for "summer camp" and sometimes rearrange billions of dollars with game-changing M&A -- but John Malone today dropped more hints about content consolidation.
- While media distribution companies have more obvious benefits from consolidation, Malone -- who has hands in Liberty Global (NASDAQ:LBTYA), Liberty Media (NASDAQ:LMCA), Liberty Interactive (NASDAQ:QVCA), Charter (NASDAQ:CHTR) and Starz (NASDAQ:STRZA) -- said economies can apply to content too.
- "It's all about global scale," he told CNBC. "If you want to be a meaningful player in most of any of these media communication businesses, you have to think about it."
- And while speculation boils about a tie-up between Malone's Starz (STRZA) and Lions Gate (NYSE:LGF) after the two swapped stock, Malone focused on the educational side: "I'm an engineer; what the hell do I know about content? Trying to understand where these ideas come from, how they get created and produced. The development of stories is really going to be important in this random-access world that Reed Hastings (NASDAQ:NFLX) is driving us into."
- Malone said Netflix changed the game, and that his companies "missed the boat a little bit" on over-the-top offerings.
- Today: NFLX +2.4%; LGF +0.9%; QVCA +0.3%; CHTR +0.2%.
Jun. 2, 2015, 6:46 PM
- Mogul John Malone floated an interesting idea today: Forget Sprint and T-Mobile -- the wireless industry could get its third major alternative to Verizon and AT&T (NYSE:T) with the merger of Charter Communications (CHTR -1.6%) and Time Warner Cable (TWC -0.9%).
- Malone was speaking at his various Liberty companies' annual meetings and noted that in 2012, the cable consortium SpectrumCo got an option to participate in a wireless MVNO service with Verizon (NYSE:VZ) after the wireless firm bought $3.9B in frequencies.
- Charter wasn't in SpectrumCo then, but merger partners TWC and Bright House are. “The concept that Comcast, a greatly enlarged Charter and Cox could together offer a WiFi-optimized connectivity service with a default to a Verizon MVNO is an interesting concept," Malone said.
- He thinks "there's very little dirty underwear" left to be found in a regulatory review of Charter-TWC after the past year's scrutiny.
- Also of interest regarding Charter capex and the dividend: “Everybody's going to say, ‘Oh he’s spending too much capital,’ but I think the end result with be worth it ... To a large degree we’re betting on Tom Rutledge and his team to wake up a sleepy cable company that was treading water in all honesty for a while and trying to satisfy shareholder pressures with buybacks and dividends as opposed to putting the money into having a competitive service offering.”
- Malone company shares today: LMCA -0.1%; LMCB flat; LMCK flat; LTRPA -0.9%; LTRPB +2.2%; QVCA +0.8%; LBRDA +0.1%; OTCQB:LBRDB flat; LBRDK -0.1%.
Jun. 1, 2011, 9:38 PMDistressed investor Gores Group arrives to bid for more than half of what's left of bankrupt Borders Group (BGPIQ.PK) - and it may not be the only suitor, in interest sparked by Liberty Media's (LCAPA) bid for Barnes & Noble (BKS). Gores could try to rehabilitate Borders in slimmer fashion, paying some $200M for more than 200 of the 405 remaining stores. | Jun. 1, 2011, 9:38 PM | 4 Comments
May 19, 2011, 7:09 PM
Barnes & Noble (BKS) up 20.3% AH as it announces it's gotten an acquisition offer from Liberty Media (LCAPA) at $17/share, about $1B - contingent on B&N Chairman Len Riggio keeping his equity ownership and management role.| May 19, 2011, 7:09 PM | 7 Comments
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