MSOs File Adelphia Merger with FCC


Comcast Corp. and Time Warner Inc. are asking federal regulators to approve their joint acquisition of Adelphia Communications Corp., claiming that they are in better position than the bankrupt cable company to offer an array of advanced video and data services.

The $17.6 billion merger was filed with the Federal Communications Commission Wednesday and released to the media one day later.

The deal also requires approval from the Federal Trade Commission, which imposed strong conditions on the merger between Time Warner and America Online Inc. in early 2001.

Comcast and Time Warner made the filing with Adelphia. After the transaction, Comcast said it would control 28.9% of pay TV subscribers. Earlier in the week, the FCC launched a rulemaking on cable-ownership limits. In 2001, a federal court rejected the agency’s 30% subscriber cap and related rules.

The merger “will generate real and substantial benefits for consumers that are not achievable through other means and will do so without violating any statute or [FCC] rule or creating any anticompetitive effects or media-diversity concerns,” the cable companies said in an 86-page filing.