Cablevision finishes deal for N.Y., N.J. TCI systems

Higher stock price raised ante on deal

Cablevision Systems Corp. completed its billion-dollar acquisition of Tele-Communications Inc.’s cable systems in New Jersey and New York Wednesday, although the price of the deal has risen $600 million in the past 10 months because Cablevision’s stock price has trebled in that time.

Cablevision acquired systems serving 830,000 customers in Westchester County, N.Y., and Long Island, N.Y., and in New Jersey, taking the cabler’s total subscriber count to 2.5 million.

The cabler issued 12.2 million shares, equivalent to 33% of its outstanding stock, to TCI and assumed $669 million of debt. When the deal was first announced last June, Cablevision’s stock price was trading at around $34, and the overall value of the deal was about $1.1 billion.

But Cablevision’s stock price closed unchanged Wednesday at $94.87, taking the value of the deal to $1.7 billion.

Separately, Cablevision and TCI said Wednesday they had reached an agreement in principle for Cablevision to purchase a system serving 250,000 customers in Connecticut in a swap for Cablevision’s Michigan system and extra stock. That deal will be completed later this year.

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