Light Reading
Shaw calls time on its wireless ambitions; analysis of Comcast's Arris investment; Liberty Global strengthens Euro portfolio; and more

Shaw Offloads Assets to Rogers

Ray Le Maistre
LR Mobile News Analysis
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief
1/15/2013
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Money matters and online intrigue feature in today's broadband and cable news roundup.

  • Rogers Communications Inc. has agreed to buy Shaw Communications Inc.'s minority stake in Mountain Cablevision Ltd. and a number of Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) licenses covering Western Canada in deals worth $700 million, reports the Globe and Mail. The deals represent the end of Shaw's ambitions to run a wireless network in the country as its rivals look for more 4G spectrum. In addition, Shaw is to buy the 33.3 percent partnership interest in TVtropolis currently held by Rogers. For more details, see this press release.
  • Comcast Corp. is poised to spend $150 million for a 7.85 percent stake in Arris Group Inc., but there's still plenty of risk associated with Arris's pending $2.35 billion acquisition of Motorola Home from Google, according to one industry analyst. The investment "signals that Comcast views their relationship with the new combined Arris/Motorola Home business as strategically important," says Jefferies & Co. Inc. analyst James Kisner in a note issued Monday night. Still, Comcast's investment "doesn't change our view that the Motorola Home transaction poses significant integration risks to Arris," added Kisner, who maintained his "Hold" rating on Arris shares. (See Comcast to Plow $150M Into Arris.)
  • What will Facebook announce mid-Tuesday? It seems a branded device and/or a Facebook browser is expected, reports The Guardian. Quite what Facebook's motivations might be for such launches, though, are less clear (until later Tuesday, potentially...).
  • Liberty Global Inc. has increased its stake in Belgium's Telenet to 58 percent, up from 51 percent. Mike Fries, president and CEO of Liberty Global said in a statement: "We believe that this is the right time for Telenet to be more closely integrated within our pan-European platform." (See Liberty Global Bids $2.5B for Telenet.)
  • Jinni Media Ltd. says it has secured seven new licensing deals for a "semantic discovery" platform that helps consumers find shows they like based on their moods. The new licensees include Time Warner Cable Inc., Wal-Mart's VUDU Inc. unit, France's Bouygues Telecom, Nordic pay-tv provider C More Entertainment, Prisa TV of Spain, South Africa's Multichoice, and Singapore Telecommunications Ltd. (SingTel). Belgacom SA and Swisscom AG are among Jinni's earlier licensees. (See Jinni Locks In Its A Round.)
  • Canada's Cogeco Cable Inc. has reported a 4 percent year-on-year increase in revenues to $327.9 million and a very slight decrease in profits, to $42.2 million, for its first fiscal quarter that ended Nov. 30, 2012. For more details, check out this earnings release.
  • Indian cable operator Thamizhaga Cable TV Communication Ltd. (TCCL) is to deploy the Verimatrix Inc. Video Content Authority System (VCAS) system to secure its digital TV service, which is being rolled out in the south-east state of Tamil Nadu. See this press release for more details. -- The Staff, Light Reading Cable

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