Liberty to spin off US cable assets
Liberty Media has revealed plans to spin off Liberty Broadband Group into a separate publicly-traded company. Greg Maffei, Liberty Media President and CEO made the announcement as the company revealed it Q1 2014 earnings.
Maffei said: “We believe a separate Liberty Broadband will offer investors greater choice and transparency, and is well timed with Charter’s agreements with Comcast which will result in Charter owning or serving over eight million video customers.”
Liberty Media’s board has authorised management to pursue a plan to spin-off to its stockholders common stock of a newly formed company to be called Liberty Broadband and to distribute subscription rights to acquire shares of Liberty Broadband’s common stock. Liberty Broadband would be comprised of, among other things, Liberty Media’s (i) interest in Charter Communications, (ii) subsidiary TruePosition, (iii) minority equity investment in Time Warner Cable and (iv) certain deferred tax and deferred revenue liabilities, as well as liabilities related to the Time Warner call option. In the spin-off, record holders of Series A, Series B and Series C common stock would receive one-quarter of a share of the corresponding series of Liberty Broadband common stock for each share of common stock held by them as of the record date for the spin-off, with cash in lieu of fractional shares. In addition, stockholders will also receive a subscription right to acquire one share of Series C Liberty Broadband common stock for every five shares of Liberty Broadband common stock they receive in the spin-off.
The subscription rights are being issued to raise capital for general corporate purposes of Liberty Broadband and will enable the holders to acquire shares of Series C Liberty Broadband common stock at a 20 per cent discount to the 20-trading day volume weighted average trading price of the Series C Liberty Broadband common stock following the completion of the spin-off. Liberty Media expects the subscription rights to become publicly traded once the exercise price has been established and the rights offering to expire forty trading days following the completion of the spin-off.
The completion of the spin-off and the commencement of the rights offering is expected to occur in the second half of 2014.