Cablevision's Dolan makes public TWC merger proposal at INTX

CHICAGO--Making about as overt a gesture as you're ever likely to see at a trade show, Cablevision (NYSE: CVC) CEO James Dolan told an INTX panel audience, in very few uncertain words, that he'd like Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) to buy his company. 

"Consolidation of the [New York] marketplace would provide a great deal of ingenuity and lower prices for consumers," Dolan said on a panel of top cable company CEOs, moderated by CNBC media and entertainment reporter Julia Boorstin. "If New York was operated like one market, you would see things like Wi-Fi more effectively distributed throughout the marketplace … if it were operated as one operation, there would be a lot more we could do."

Asked by Boorstin if, by suggesting consolidation, he was implying that Cablevision should partner or merge with Verizon FiOS (NYSE: VZ), Dolan replied, "No."

Asked the same question about TWC, with that MSO's CEO, Rob Marcus, standing a mere five feet away from him, Dolan responded with a "yes."

Dolan's surprising comments juiced Cablevision's stock more than 7 percent Wednesday and solicited this amusing remark from fellow panelist Patrick Esser, president of Cox Communications: "I feel like I'm on match.com, and we're all trying to update our relationship status in front of 10,000 people."

Before Dolan even uttered a sentence, Marcus set the tone for TWC's response, noting, "We're not going to discuss M&A today."

Show coverage: INTX Live 2015

Related articles:
Cablevision CEO: Our video product is losing margins
Cablevision becomes the first pay-TV company to distribute Hulu
Cablevision rolls out addressable advertising platform

Suggested Articles

Sling TV has joined the Watch Party craze with a co-watching feature that includes real-time video and chat interactions.

Cable, satellite, and telecom pay TV providers should expect one of the worst years ever for cord cutting, according to eMarketer.

Comcast may be under pressure to split up its cable and media businesses and one analyst said that such a move could unlock value for both assets.