Adelphia’s Sale Strategy: Seven Clusters

Bidders for Adelphia Communications Corp. will have their pick of seven different geographic clusters, the Denver-based MSO said in a statement late Tuesday.

Adelphia, which has about 5.4 million subscribers, said interested parties will have the option of bidding on any or all of seven clusters, organized based on geography and their ability to operate as stand-alone entities.

“Beyond that, the goal of the clustering strategy is to get the most competitive auction going,” Adelphia president and chief operating officer Ron Cooper said.

The clusters are as follows: northern New England/eastern New York; Cleveland/Greater Ohio Valley; Florida/Southeast; California/Western; Virginia/Maryland/Colorado Springs/Kentucky; Pennsylvania; and western New York/Connecticut.

Cooper said the clusters range in size from 500,000-1.3 million customers, and they were selected with two categories of potential bidders in mind: large and small MSOs and financial buyers.

He added that potential bidders that have signed confidentiality agreements will receive a 230-page confidential information memorandum beginning Wednesday, which includes overviews of each cluster, historical and projected financial information and operational overviews for each system.

From there, bidders who express further interest -- a preliminary bid -- will gain access to an electronics database of more detailed information.

Cooper said preliminary bids are expected between now and the end of October, with final bids expected late in the year.

Adelphia is expected to attract total bids of $17 billion-$20 billion. Bidders are expected to include large MSOs such as Comcast Corp., Time Warner Cable and Charter Communications Inc., as well as smaller companies like Patriot Media & Communications and Bresnan Communications.