Altice USA priced its initial public offering at $30 per share on Wednesday night, at the higher end of the expected range of $27 to $31 each.
Altice USA first announced its IPO intentions in April. The company, which has about 4.9 million residential and business customers in 21 states, had said earlier this month that it expected to price its offering at $27 to $31 per share.
Altice USA also increased the number of shares it plans to offer to 63.9 million shares from 46.6 million. At that price and number of shares, the offering will raise about $1.9 billion.
The bulk of the offering proceeds will go to two selling shareholders – BC Partners and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) – who together have said they would sell about 51 million shares. Altice USA expects to sell 12.1 million shares.
Altice USA will begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “ATUS” on Thursday (June 22).
Altice is the second cable IPO this year. In May, WideOpenWest went public at $17 per share, well below its expected range of $20 to $22 per share.
While Altice USA is larger – WOW has about 474,000 video customers and is in smaller markets – part of the allure of Altice stock is its potential use as a deal currency. While Altice USA has said it will focus on organic growth in the near term, the company has made no bones about its desire to grow through acquisition. With a solid U.S.-based deal currency, that becomes a more attractive option for potential targets.
Altice USA’s parent, European telecom company Altice N.V., will remain in control of the company after the offering is complete. According to Altice USA, Altice N.V. will own 70.3% of Altice USA's issued and outstanding common stock, which will represent 98.3% of the voting power of Altice USA's outstanding common stock.
J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup and Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC are acting as joint book-running managers for the offering and representatives of the underwriters, together with BofA Merrill Lynch, Barclays, BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole CIB, Deutsche Bank Securities and RBC Capital Markets as additional joint bookrunning managers.