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Oh, Consolidation?

Comments by a Rogers Communications Inc. (NYSE: RG; Toronto: RCI) exec has rekindled the idea that wedding bells could be in the future for Rogers and other Canadian cable MSOs, including Shaw Communications Inc.

Speaking at the Goldman Sachs & Co. Communicopia conference Tuesday, Rogers COO Nadir Mohamed said the company could go after Shaw or other smaller cable operators if the financial stars lined up.

"Whether it's Shaw or any other cable company that comes to the market, at the right price, right timing, we'd look at it," Mohamed said.

In addition to operating cable systems serving about 2.2 million customers in Western Canada, Shaw also operates a direct broadcast satellite company called Star Choice, which has roughly 153,200 subs. Based on past comments, Shaw has also positioned itself as an early adopter candidate of Docsis 3.0.

Toronto-based Rogers, already the nation's major provider of wireless phone service, operates cable systems passing about 3.5 million homes.

The possibility of a merger popped up in January when National Bank Financial speculated that the "probability is growing" that Rogers would buy the Calgary-based MSO due to the shareholder value such a deal could create.

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News

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