Cablevision CEO Doesn’t Rule Out Sale As Company Reports Mixed Q2 Earnings

Cablevision shares shot up 5.8% this morning after James Dolan told analysts “you never say never” when asked whether his family might sell the cable company — seen as a potential target for Charter or Time Warner Cable. He doesn’t want to look like he’s inviting a sale. “Our plans are to continue to proceed in terms of operating the company in the best interest of the company and its shareholders.” The Cablevision CEO also seemed to back away slightly from his previous reference to Long Island’s Newsday as a core asset. “The business is somewhat in transition” he said although he adds that Cablevision believes the newspaper helps the company and “there is a potential for a very bright future for that business.” The comments follow Cablevision’s so-so Q2 earnings report this morning. The company’s net income included $107.5M from discontinued operations, led by Rocky Mountain systems it sold to Charter and the Clearview Cinema chain sold to Bow Tie Cinemas. With their contributions, net income ended up at $135.4M, +113.1%, on revenues of $1.57B, +0.8%. That’s just a hair short of the $1.58B in revenues that analysts expected. The video business underperformed: Cablevision ended the quarter with 2.87M subs, down 20,000 over the three month period. The Street expected a loss of 9,000. The company also reported that revenues from video fell 2.1% to $793M while ad sales dropped 7.5% to $37M. They were offset by modest growth in high-speed Internet services and phone businesses.

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