Charter Communications: Another Bid for Time Warner Cable?
In the summer and fall of 2013, Charter Communications, the fourth-largest cable television company by market share, made multiple bids to acquire Time Warner Cable, the second-largest company, only to be rejected. Then, in late 2013, Time Warner Cable invited Comcast Corporation, the largest cable television company, to make a friendly bid. In February 2014, Time Warner Cable accepted Comcast Corporation's bid. However, a year later, in April 2015, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission recommended hearings on the merger case, signalling that the agency was unlikely to approve the merger. Following that announcement, Comcast Corporation terminated its proposed merger agreement with Time Warner Cable on April 24, 2015, which meant that Time Warner Cable was again available for a merger. At that point, Charter Communications had to decide whether to launch a new bid for Time Warner Cable. If so, what should Charter Communications do differently in this new bid attempt? This case is suitable for students in undergraduate capstone courses in strategic management and business policy, with a view on reinforcing the need to analyze strategic decisions such as mergers and acquisitions (M&A) from a richer and more nuanced perspective that includes not only the role of managements of the companies involved but also the role of interested industry players. It is best taught during the second half of the course semester, when corporate level strategies are being covered. This case is also useful in graduate business strategy courses discussing M&As, to broaden the analysis and to understand the role of multiple forces. Radha Chaganti is affiliated with Rider University. Mayank Jaiswal is affiliated with Rider University. Rajeswararao Chaganti is affiliated with Temple University.