Altice looking for private equity help to buy Charter, report says

Charter headquarters building

Partick Drahi’s Altice NV is reportedly looking to its private equity partners for help in putting together an offer to buy Charter Communications.

According to Bloomberg, citing individuals “with knowledge” of the matter, Drahi may approach London’s BC Partners and Toronto-based Canada Pensions about investing alongside Altice in a deal to buy the No. 2 U.S. cable company.

Neither Altice or the private equity managers are commenting.


Like this story? Subscribe to FierceVideo!

The Video industry is an ever-changing world where big ideas come along daily. Cable, Media and Entertainment, Telco, and Tech companies rely on FierceVideo for the latest news, trends, and analysis on video creation and distribution, OTT delivery technologies, content licensing, and advertising strategies. Sign up today to get news and updates delivered to your inbox and read on the go.

Altice’s chance of enticing Charter is regarded by analysts as very slim. Charter’s market capitalization dwarfs Altice’s at around $120 billion versus $36 billion. With debt, the purchase price could approach $185 billion.

RELATED: Charter out of reach for all proposed suitors, incredulous analyst says

Charter’s biggest investor, Liberty Media impresario John Malone, is reported to be cool to the idea of a stock-laden deal in which he’d end up owning a lot of equity in a company with a huge debt. 

Private equity help—along with a weak dollar—could make a difference for Drahi, however. 

It was BC Partners and Canada Pension that got Altice into the U.S. cable game, selling their 70% stakes in Suddenlink Communications to the European conglomerate for $9.1 billion.

Weeks later, the pair invested $1 billion in Altice’s $17.7 billion takeover of Cablevision. Part of that agreement, Bloomberg said, was a clause that said the private equity firms had to work with Altice on a future U.S. deal. 

Suggested Articles

From dawn to dusk, leading industry research will be shared across a dozen presentations.

Amazon is rolling out updates this week that will allow some customers in the U.S. to access Spanish language on supported Fire TV devices.

NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke is reportedly planning to leave his position next year, allowing Jeff Snell to take over the chief executive role.