Cablevision’s Dividend Returns

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Cablevision Systems Corp.’s on-again, off-again special dividend is on again after the Bethpage, N.Y.-based cable operator said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing late Monday that its board of directors authorized company management to “take all steps that would be necessary” to implement the $3 billion cash payout to shareholders, subject to conditions.

According to the company, the conditions are: "satisfying applicable legal standards; obtaining the necessary financing on terms and conditions acceptable to the board; establishment by the board of the record date, payment date and final dividend declaration of the special dividend in accordance with applicable New York Stock Exchange requirements; and final board approval after completion of its ongoing analysis of the proposed dividend."

Cablevision management first proposed the $3 billion dividend in June, after its controlling Dolan family dropped its $7.9 billion bid to buy the remaining shares of the company they did not own and take the company private.

In December, the dividend was put on hold after Cablevision said it discovered that the dividend would violate certain bank covenants.

In January, the company completed its review and determined that it was in compliance with all of its loan covenants.

The dividend is expected to mean about $10.40 per share for each shareholder. The Dolan family, which owns about 68.8 million Cablevision shares, would stand to reap about $715 million from the one-time dividend.

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