Insight Splits Up

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It happened a day later than originally planned, but Insight Communications and Comcast completed the previously announced split of their 50-50 Insight Midwest partnership on Jan. 2.

The deal was first announced in April and had been planned to close by the end of the year. In the end, the two parties only missed that deadline by one day — Insight had originally hoped to close the transaction by Dec. 31, with the actual exchange of assets occurring on Jan. 1.

Comcast gains control of systems in Illinois (Rockford/Dixon, Quincy/Macomb, Springfield, Peoria and Champaign/Urbana) and in Indiana (Bloomington, Anderson, and Lafayette/Kokomo) that pass 1.2 million homes and have about 696,000 basic video customers.

Insight retains systems in Kentucky (Louisville, Lexington, Bowling Green and Covington), Evansville, Ind.; and Columbus, Ohio; that pass a total of 1.3 million homes and have about 665,800 basic video customers.

Comcast paid the partnership about $1.3 billion at closing for its share of the partnership’s debt.

With the dissolution of the partnership, Insight also loses the ability to purchase programming at Comcast’s volume discount.

The cable operator pulled a planned auction in September after weakness in the debt markets affected some private equity players’ ability to competitively bid. Although Time Warner Cable has acknowledged it was a participant in the auction, it remains to be seen when or whether Insight will come back on the block.

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