Reports: Charter Prepares Bid for TWC

$135 Per Share Bid Could Come Next Week

The pressure for a deal between Charter Communications and Time Warner Cable reached a fever pitch on Friday, after reports surfaced that the Stamford, Conn.-headquartered cable operator is preparing an offer letter for the larger MSO that could come as soon as next week.

Speculation concerning a Charter takeover attempt of Time Warner Cable has been swirling around both companies since June. And earlier this month Charter was said to have lined up about $25 billion in bank financing for a deal. According to a report in Bloomberg News this morning, Charter was preparing a “bear hug” letter, offering less than $140 per share for the company in a cash and stock deal. Bloomberg said the letter could reach TWC chairman and CEO Glenn Britt’s desk by next week.

A report on The New York Times web site said Charter would offer under $135 for TWC, valuing the nation’s second largest cable company at about $65 billion.

The price is considerably lower than the $150 to $160 per share that Bloomberg reported slast week TWC would accept, but is well above the $90 per share price range at which TWC was trading in before the deal rumors surfaced.

Officials at TWC and Charter both declined comment.

TWC shares were up slightly on the news, closing at $13.41 per share, up 35 cents or 0.27%, a departure from the wild trading swings that have usually occurred after reports have surfaced about any forward progress in the deal. Charter stock closed at $131.54 per share, down 45 cents each or 0.3% per share