Kekst supports Charter in proposed Time Warner deal

Kekst & Co. is representing Charter Communications in its proposed combination with Time Warner Cable.

NEW YORK: Kekst & Co. is representing Charter Communications in its proposed combination with Time Warner Cable.

Time Warner is working with Sard Verbinnen & Co, and it has devised a communications strategy focused on stating the company's value, refuting misinformation, and running business as usual, said Susan Leepson, TWC's group VP of PR and communications strategy. She did not disclose further details about the company's strategy.

Charter is reaching out to national outlets, trade publications, and M&A reporters. The company is looking for engagement from Time Warner's management team and board, said Justin Venech, Charter's VP of external communications.

“This is a good proposal for Time Warner Cable and Charter's shareholders,” he said. “Our main goal is to engage in proactive discussions with TWC's management.”

Charter Communications, the fourth-largest cable operator in the US, offered to acquire number two distributor Time Warner for $37.3 billion on Monday. Charter proposed paying $132.50 per share.

Forty-five percent ownership in the combined company would go to Time Warner's shareholders. Charter's largest shareholder, Liberty Media, wants to maintain its 27% stake in the company and has the option to invest more equity in Charter, according to reports.

TWC's board rejected the bid – Charter's third attempt to buy the company – and said it would only entertain an offer of $160 per share. Charter is now planning to take the deal directly to Time Warner investors, according to reports on the acquisition.

Comcast, the largest cable operator in the US, may play a role in the deal by bidding for all or part of Time Warner – alone or in partnership with Cox Communications – by joining Charter's bid or purchasing assets from Charter post-deal, according to Bloomberg News.

A representative from Comcast was not immediately available for comment. There are no updates on negotiations at this time, according to Venech.

In October, TWC reported that revenue for the third quarter of 2013 increased 2.9% from the same period of the previous year to $5.5 billion. Charter's third-quarter revenue of $2.1 billion, reported last November, rose 5.4%, compared with the year prior.  

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