Economy Stock

Altice USA’s $8.4B Sweetened Takeover Bid Not Sweet Enough For Cogeco Owners

(Benzinga) — Canadian telecom firm Cogeco Communications Inc’s (OTC: CGEAF) owners — the Audet family — rejected an enhanced hostile takeover attempt by Altice USA, Inc (NYSE: ATUS) on Sunday.

What Happened: Louis Audet, the executive chairman of Cogeco, in a statement said that the family isn’t interested in the $8.4 billion hostile bid made by Altice.

Audet claimed that this is “not a negotiating strategy, but a definitive refusal.”

Patrick Drahi-owned Altice had offered $8.4 billion to acquire all outstanding shares of Cogeco, seeking to own all assets of the latter, including Atlantic Broadband.

Under Altice’s terms, the Canadian operations of Cogeco would be sold to Rogers Communications Inc (NYSE: RCI) at an adjusted net price of nearly $3.9 billion. 

Gestion Audem, the Audet family controlling company, holds 69% of all voting rights in Cogeco Inc, which in turn controls 82.9% of all rights in Cogeco Communications.

Why It Matters: Drahi’s attempts to take over Cogeco are said to be an effort to consolidate operations of Atlantic Broadband with Altice USA, so it can take on rivals such as Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ: CMCSA), Charter Communications (NASDAQ: CHTR) and Verizon Communications Inc (NYSE: VZ), the Financial Times reported.

The Audet family was offered $682 million for their ownership interests by the U.S. company, as per a statement from Altice. The cable company also made an offer to pay nearly $93 and $113 respectively to subordinate voting shareholders in Cogeco and Cogeco Communications. 

Price Action: Altice USA shares closed 0.63% higher at $28.63 on Friday. 

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