The Dolan family, which founded Bethpage, NY-based cable TV firm Cablevision Systems, has been trying to take the public company private through a $10.6 billion leveraged buyout. That bid was voted down yesterday by investors, who mostly believed the offer of around $36 per share wasn't rich enough (the stock closed short of $31 yesterday).
Telcos certainly are still newbies in the TV business, but they have moved into a phase of rapid expansion. As The Wall Street Journal point out yesterday, Cablevision has more exposure to Verizon's FiOS deployments than any other cable TV company, with FiOS already passing near 25% of its customers. Cablevision investors are puffing their chests out now, but will they be as determined as the Dolans seem to be about participating in a telco/cable dogfight that is sure to only get worse? Fellow cable TV company Comcast today reported lower customer additions during the third quarter, which the company admitted was the result of tighter competition. If Comcast, the nation's largest cable TV company is being hurt by competition, the toughest challenges may be yet to come for Cablevision.