Louisiana residents should be interested to know that Altice SA has agreed to make a bid to purchase Suddenlink Communications. If the acquisition is approved by regulators, it will be owner of Altice SA’s first entry into the current U.S. Cable market. Initial estimates have the transaction closing at just over nine billion dollars.
Should the deal be approved, it will not result in a complete and total takeover of Suddenlink Communications, but rather will result in Altice SA becoming a majority shareholder with about a 70 percent ownership stake in the seventh largest U.S. cable company.
Interestingly Altice SA’s interest in the U.S. cable market is not just limited to Suddenlink Communications. Not quite satisfied with pursuing just one merger at a time, Altice SA has also set its sight at acquiring media giant Time Warner Cable which also happens to be the second biggest cable company in the United States. Given that an earlier very recent takeover attempt of Time Warner Cable by Comcast Corp. failed and was eventually called off after the deal fell through, it remains to be seen whether Altice’s bid will succeed where Comcast has failed.
Should Altice successfully become a majority shareholder in St. Louis based Suddenlink Communications, it will gain instant access to Suddenlink’s 1.5 million strong residential and commercial customer base that reside in over a dozen states, including Louisiana. However, should the Time Warner bid also succeed, Altice will become a major contender in the current volatile and turbulent U.S. cable market with more than 10 million customers.
Business deals are essential to keep the current market competitive. Mergers and acquisitions in general are closely scrutinized by federal regulators, and involve intense negotiations and, in some cases, compromises. Having a business law firm familiar with such transactions by one’s side during negotiations can be instrumental in making the deal a reality.
Source: Bloomberg Business, “Altice to Acquire Suddenlink Stake in $9.1 Billion U.S. Deal,” Marie Mawad, May 20, 2015