Liberty Global Completes $4.1 Billion Acquisition of Kabel BW
COLOGNE, Germany – Liberty Global has completed its $4.1 billion acquisition of Germany’s number three cable TV operator, Kabel BW.
German regulatory authorities approved the deal, making John Malone’s Liberty, which already controls German cabler Unitymedia, the second-largest operator in the territory, serving more than 10 million subscribers. Togther, Liberty's German operators have a combined annual revenue of around $2 billion (€1.6 billion).
Liberty outbid investors CVC and Hellman & Friedman to take control of Kabel BW. The cable operator isn’t huge -- just 2.4 million subscribers -- but they are all located in the rich German state of Baden-Wurttemberg.
And KBW is expanding fast. The group posted double-digit sales and earnings growth for the first nine months of 2011.
Germany is Europe’s largest cable TV market and its fastest growing.
Instead of cable cutting, German customers are paying cable providers more for high-speed Internet and telephony services in addition to their TV fix.