Comcast, Charter Prep to Fight Over Potential TWC Acquisition

**Editor’s Note: Please click


for a recap of the biggest channel-impacting mergers in Q3 2013.**

A major cable merger could be on the not-too-distant horizon.

Although the two companies aren’t in “active discussions,” Time Warner Cable has made gestures toward Comcast about teaming up, sources told CNBC on Friday. Executives at TWC reportedly aren’t excited about Charter Communications making a bid for their company, a possibility that the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.

While an acquisition of Time Warner Cable by either Comcast or Charter would be reviewed closely by the FCC, Comcast, especially, would draw an eagle eye. Comcast is the largest cable operator in the U.S., while TWC is the second-largest. (Remember what happened to AT&T’s attempt to buy fourth-largest wireless company T-Mobile a couple of years ago.) While cablecos don’t compete with each other like the telcos do, the FCC does have regulations concerning just how large they can grow to be.

Charter’s parent, Liberty Media, is said to be close to sealing a deal with major banks for financing that would cover Time Warner Cable’s debt.

Time Warner Cable’s stock price was up nearly 10 percent Friday afternoon on the news, while Charter’s was up more than 5 percent and Comcast’s jumped 5 percent as well.

Follow senior online managing editor @Craig_Galbraith on Twitter.

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