Cable company Charter has announced they’ll be buying Time Warner Cable for what amounts to a $78.7 billion deal. Charter also plans to buy smaller cable company Bright House Networks in a separate $10.4 billion deal. More details in this The Verge article. While Charter’s the fourth largest cable company in the US, it’ll affirm Time Warner (or whatever the merged companies are called) staying the second largest behind Comcast after the merger’s done.
Pretty big news for a good portion of the country, particularly the midwest, where Charter, Bright House, and Time Warner have some sway in areas like Wisconsin and Detroit. Yours Truly used to be a Time Warner Cable customer back in Milwaukee. However, the biggest cities affected by this deal are New York and Los Angeles, which’re Time Warner Cable territory.
Comcast’s merger attempt with Time Warner fell through recently, but that didn’t take Time Warner Cable off the market. While the usual “merger will be examined by the feds” talk is bandied about, I doubt they’ll block this merger. The merged company will be huge (of course), but won’t have anything resembling Comcast’s media assets—Universal Studios and NBC particularly. If wondering, Time Warner Cable is no longer related to Time Warner itself, as TWC was spun off a few years ago.
Either way, don’t expect cable bills to drop or actual choice of cable companies to rise… or the continued cord cutting trend to let up anytime soon.