Market Moment: Dolan Family Tries to take Cablevision Private

Today in market history 2007, after repeated attempts, the Dolan family reaches an agreement to take company Cablevision private for $10.6 billion. In October, Cablevision shareholders rejected the bid for $36.26 per share. The stock would drop to the low 20s by year end as the Financial Crisis took hold.

Charles Dolan founded Cablevision in 1973 with funds received from the sale of a Manhattan based cable company he sold to Time Life Inc, along with the Home Box Office (HBO). The company began as a suburban cable provider on Long Island and grew to become the 5th largest cable provider in the United States.

In 1994, Cablevision acquired the Madison Square Garden company, which includes the MSG property and the professional sports teams it hosts – The New York Knicks, the New York Rangers, and the New York Liberty. The MSG company, which was spun off from Cablevision in 2010 and still run by the Dolan family, also owns the television rights for the sports franchises. MSG co also owns the legendary Beacon Theater (one of my favorite music venues) and holds a long-term lease to operate Radio City Music Hall.

In September 2015, Cablevision announced a deal to be acquired by European telecom conglomerate, Altice, for $17.7 billion dollars. This sale was complete, leaving the Dolan family in control of the MSG company and AMC networks. Cablevision’s TV, phone, and internet services are now marketing under the Optimum brand by Altice, which went public in June 2017, raising $2.2 billion at its IPO.

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