You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Telecom Mogul Patrick Drahi Reorganizes Altice in Separate Companies for U.S. and Europe

Altice NV Chairman-CEO Patrick Drahi is reorganizing his cable empire with plans to split the company into separate entities for the U.S. and Europe.

The Altice USA division will be spun off from Altice NV. The remaining company will be renamed Altice Europe. Drahi will retain his tight control of both entities, serving as chairman of Altice Europe and president of the board for Altice USA. Altice said it expects the reorganization to close by the second quarter after securing shareholder and regulatory approval.

“The separation will allow both Altice Europe and Altice USA to focus on their respective operations and execute against their strategies, deliver value for shareholders, and realize their full potential,” Drahi said. “Both operations will have the fundamental Altice model at their heart through my close personal involvement as well as that of the historic founding team.

The goal is to streamline the operations of both companies, making their operations more transparent and attractive to investors. Altice has been grappling with a heavy debt load that is more than five times earnings. As part of the split, Altice USA will pay a $1.5 billion dividend to Altice Europe, helping the latter company pay down existing debt.

With the separation, Dennis Okhuijsen will focus on Altice Europe, and Altice USA CEO Dexter Goei will focus exclusively on running the cable systems acquired in 2015 and 2016 from Cablevision and Suddenlink. Altice USA is the nation’s fourth-largest cable operator. But the consolidation of its earnings with Altice NV’s cable, pay TV and telecom businesses in France and other parts of Europe made the company harder for U.S. investors to understand.

Altice USA’s debt load will top $22 billion after the dividend is paid. Goei told investors in a conference call Monday that the company recognizes that its debt-to-earnings ratio is higher than its peers and the company is aiming to pare it down to 4.5 to 5 times earnings. Goei said there are no near-term plans for Altice USA to pursue acquisitions.

Altice USA is in the midst of a carriage battle with the Starz-Encore pay-TV group. Starz’s 17 channels went dark on Altice systems Jan. 1 when the sides could not come to terms on a new deal. Altice has vowed to take a hard line on programming costs in an effort to deliver some $900 million in annual savings from the Cablevision systems, which comprise the bulk of Altice USA.

More Biz

  • Davan Maharaj Mel Gibson

    L.A. Times Publisher's Lawyer Was Accused of Extorting Mel Gibson

    The attorney who negotiated a $2.5 million exit package for L.A. Times publisher Davan Maharaj was previously accused of using secret recordings to extort actor Mel Gibson. Surreptitious recordings also figure in the Maharaj case. NPR reported on Wednesday that Maharaj taped Tronc chairman Michael Ferro. According to the report, Ferro was heard on the [...]

  • 'Blurred Lines' Suit Ends With $5

    'Blurred Lines' Suit Ends With $5 Million Judgement Against Robin Thicke, Pharrell Williams

    After five years, the legal battle over the copyright of the Robin Thicke’s 2013 hit “Blurred Lines” has ended, with Marvin Gaye’s family being awarded a final judgment of nearly $5 million against the song’s primary writers, Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams, according to CNN and other reports. The pair were accused of copyright infringement [...]

  • WME Veteran Ari Greenburg Promoted to

    WME Veteran Ari Greenburg Promoted to President of Talent Agency

    WME veteran Ari Greenburg, one of the original Endeavor staffers who helped build the talent agency that became an industry powerhouse, has been promoted to president. Greenburg will oversee all daily operations across WME and its offices in Beverly Hills, New York, Nashville, London and Sydney. The promotion recognizes the role that Greenburg has played [...]

  • Alison Wenham Steps Down as CEO

    Alison Wenham Steps Down as CEO of WIN

    After 12 years at the helm of the Worldwide Independent Network, a global trade organization for the independent music industry, Alison Wenham is stepping down as Chief Executive, it was announced today. Prior to joining WIN full time in 2016 Alison was CEO of The Association of Independent Music (AIM), which she started in 1999. [...]

  • Leslie Moonves

    Leslie Moonves Quietly Exits AFI and Paley Center Boards

    Leslie Moonves, the ousted CEO of CBS Corp. who has been accused of sexual misconduct by several women, is no longer serving on the boards of trustees of the American Film Institute and the Paley Center for Media. For now, Moonves retains his seat on the board of gaming company ZeniMax Media. The appointments on [...]

  • DOJ Indicts Five in Piracy Ring

    Department of Justice Indicts Five in International Piracy Ring

    Five men were indicted Wednesday on charges that they hacked into the servers of production companies, and stole hundreds of films and TV shows, including “50 Shades of Grey” and “The Walking Dead.” The men are based in four countries — the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, and India. Only one has been [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content