Comcast-Time Warner: Deal or No Deal?

No deal. Comcast will not merge with Time Warner Cable. It seems that all the work toward a $45 million merger is down the drain. Or is it?

When Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler had serious concerns that the merger risks outweighed benefits to the public interest, the companies put the kibosh on the deal. Wheeler feared a merger would have created a company with the most broadband and video subscribers in the nation alongside the ownership of significant programming interests. It was just too much power for one company.

"Today, an online video market is emerging that offers new business models and greater consumer choice,EU Wheeler said. EUThe proposed merger would have posed an unacceptable risk to competition and innovation especially given the growing importance of high-speed broadband to online video and innovative new services.EU

No-Win for Customers

Comcast Chairman and CEO Brian Roberts took it well. He said the company is moving on. Although Comcast would have liked to bring its products to new cities, he said the company structured this deal so that if the government didnEUt agree Comcast could walk away. ThatEUs what it is doing, at least for now.

For its part, Time WarnerEUs Chairman and CEO Robert Marcus reassured customers that his company is EUstrong and getting strongerEU and vowed to execute its operating plan and invest in its plant, products and people.

We caught up with Jeff Kagan, an independent technology analyst, to get his thoughts on the seemingly dead deal. He is not surprised, given he wrote a column on April 20 predicting that the FCC would not ultimately approve the deal despite some clear benefits.

EUThe problem is this merger only made sense for Comcast and Time Warner Cable. It did not make sense for the marketplace or the customers,EU Kagan said. EUUntil it makes...

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