Charter Communications® Have No Plans to Acquire Content Providers

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Even as the telecommunications company AT&T® has made big acquisitions of late and Comcast® announced plans to acquire Sky plc, Charter Communications® is going to stick to their own success formula. The company does not intend to acquire content providers in order to diversify their assets and extend video programming. The decision was announced by Charter Communications’ Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Tom Rutledge, at their Q2 earnings call.

Even though many content companies approached Charter®, the company chief said the proposed acquisitions haven’t made sense due to strategic reasons, and price. “Our views on content haven’t changed,” said Tom Rutledge. “A lot of content companies have come to us and asked us to buy them,” but the decision went against the industry tide since “there is no direct synergy for us.”

However, Charter® is planning to invest in regional sports and news channels. One of the news channels will be launched by the multiple system operator in Los Angeles, and it will be similar to their NY1 in New York City.

Comments by Tom Rutledge on content acquisition surfaced as the company reported earnings of this year’s second quarter, loss in the number of subscriber-TV customers, and growth in broadband business. Despite the reduction of pay-TV customer base and growth of Over the Top video subs, the Charter® Chairman and CEO said that video services are key to attracting and retaining subscribers. Even though the MSO does not necessarily perceive video as a standalone service any longer, Tom Rutledge hinted it would remain an integral part of the company’s subscription packages in the foreseeable future. “We are going to supply our customers with all the video they can get,” he asserted.

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In conformity with that, Charter Communications® continued to upgrade the cable systems of Bright House Networks® and Time Warner Cable® to digital-only, and roll out improved video packages sold under the Spectrum® brand to those cable systems in Q2. On the broadband business front, the MSO added residential data customers, thereby cementing their spot as the second largest broadband internet service provider in the US market.

Charter® extended DOCSIS 3.1-based gigabit internet to new markets over the course of spring. Besides, according to reports, the company also plans to extend the DOCSIS 3.1-based best internet service to almost all of their nationwide service locations or footprint by 2018.

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