View Full Version : Charter on verge of Bankruptcy?



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Tom Bombadil
12-13-2008, 11:41 PM
: Moody's downgrades Charter, says bankruptcy likely in 2009 (http://www.madison.com/tct/mad/latest/318539)

Moody's Investors Service lowered its credit rating on Charter Communications Inc. by two notches Friday after the company said it will hold discussions with bondholders in order to shore up its finances.

The ratings agency said it believes a default is imminent and bankruptcy is likely for Charter in 2009. Any bankruptcy almost certainly would be reorganizational, rather than a liquidation, which means customers wouldn't necessarily see an immediate change in service.

St. Louis-based Charter, which is the dominant subscription TV provider in the Madison area, is struggling with a debt load of more than $20 billion. It warned earlier this year it may need to file for bankruptcy protection if it failed to raise additional funds to finance its cash needs by 2010.

"We believe engaging in discussions with our bondholders, aimed at improving our capital structure and enhancing our financial flexibility, is in the company's and our customers' best interests," Charter CEO Neil Smit said in a news release.

Moody's cut its rating on Charter to "Ca" from "Caa2." Both are non-investment grade ratings.

"Charter's ratings have long reflected a high probability of default and a fundamental mismatch between the company's liability structure and its business model," Russell Solomon, Moody's senior vice president, said in a statement.

Charter, which is controlled by Microsoft Corp. co-founder Paul Allen, reported interest costs of $478 million for the third quarter compared with operating income of $208 million.

It is the fourth largest cable company in the U.S. after Comcast Corp., Time Warner Cable Inc. and Cox Communications.

Charter's shares closed down 2 cents on Friday to 13 cents.

dodge
12-13-2008, 11:44 PM
That would be a shame IF charter went belly up. They are the only cable co I have ever seen on analog that did not have some snow on every channel. It seems like if you watch a football game on comcast or mediacom up here everygame has a snowstorm or flurries.

bigfame
12-19-2008, 09:40 PM
if they did go belly up what would happen? Would comcast or Time warner swoop in and take over their customers?

Tom Bombadil
12-29-2008, 09:20 PM
The news on Charter gets worse ...

Stock is down to 9 cents a share. Market analysts are saying it will go to 5 cents. Debt has ballooned to $20B!!!

And now they have the worst overall customer satisfaction ratings out of 114 companies in a recent survey.

business: Struggling Charter takes more hits in customer experience (http://www.madison.com/tct/business/429885)

stogie5150
12-29-2008, 10:04 PM
For what they charge for what we get, I am surprised they are still in business, if everywhere is like here. I pay 60.00 a month just for 5meg internet. Most people have told me in other areas that they get a break if they get cable tv too..not here...I think they knock off 5.00/ month if you take TV too...and a decent package is 57.00/month ADDED to the internet....are they kidding me?

Only thing I am afraid of is WHO will take their place down here....:)

riffjim4069
12-29-2008, 10:42 PM
I wonder if Verizon would be interested in scooping them up (assuming it were right priced)? Offhand, I have no idea how many Charter areas are in Verizon territory, what new markets this would create, or if any of the infrustructures could be used for their FiOS network, etc.

JonUrban
12-30-2008, 01:38 AM
PLEASE! Go bankrupt! I hate them. Although I have Dish, I also have cable, mostly for internet service, but I also have their "expanded" service as a backup. Their poor cable package and price, low amount of HD, and horrible service are loathed around my neighborhood. I would love for someone to buy them, be it Comcast, TW, Cox, anyone.

They clearly suck around these parts.

jself1982
12-30-2008, 09:29 PM
I wouldn't miss Charter! I despise them.

bigfame
12-30-2008, 10:06 PM
Call me crazy, but I have all their services (5 meg internet, 2 HD DVR's, all channels, and phone service) and have never had any problems. ondemand always works, internet goes out maybe once every 2 or 3 months, and I get everything for $165.00 a month which $25.00 more a month than I pay for just Dish. True they dont have many HD channels (32 here) but everything else is great. Ive heard good things about TWC's DVR software so that would be cool to have (and they have more HD) but as suggested above I would love fios or uverse if it ever came here.

AekaGSR
12-31-2008, 08:03 PM
I'm paying 57 dollars a month for 5mb internet. As soon as ATT offers U-verse internet only, I'm getting out. 57 dollars is a damn joke for their slowest tire. I jumped ship on their crappy TV service and I'm waiting, just waiting to have some other option in my area for internet. I was so glad when I moved to Dish. nearly 20 years of Charter service ate my soul.

Reigster at SatelliteGuys