Adelphia Communications Corp. threw a morsel to investors hungry for
information concerning its off-balance-sheet debt Thursday, issuing a press
release that it would likely consolidate about $1.6 billion of that debt on its
In addition, Adelphia said it would likely have to restate its financial
reports for 1999, 2000 and 2001 to reflect the debt consolidation.
On March 27, Adelphia revealed during its fourth-quarter conference call that
it could be liable for $2.3 billion in debt held by Highland Holdings, a private
partnership controlled by Adelphia's ruling Rigas family. However, many analysts
believe the Highland debt could be as much as $2.7 billion.
According to some analysts, the remaining debt not consolidated into Adelphia
is likely the amount that its auditors believe can be covered by assets
contained in Highland Holdings -- primarily about 300,000 cable subscribers.
Most analysts believed Adelphia's willingness to issue the statement could
mean that the MSO could issue its 10-K annual report -- which was expected to
include more detail concerning the Highland partnership -- soon.
Adelphia missed an April 1 filing deadline for its 10-K and a subsequent
15-day extension. As a result of missing that deadline, the MSO said it is in
default on its public and bank debt, which have grace periods of 30 and 60 days,
Adelphia stock, down more than 70 percent since March 27, closed at $6.01 per
share Thursday, down 94 cents each.