Univision Communications announced on Wednesday it would merge with the Zoleob satellite communications firm to create a company focused on the next generation of satellite communications, with Zoles parent company Charter Communications in place as an equity holder.
The move was first reported by Bloomberg.
“Univision’s new strategy is built on a robust portfolio of assets that includes Charter’s award-winning mobile and video services, our high-performance network, our digital content, and our growing portfolio of content partnerships,” the company said in a statement.
“Together, these assets will create a more differentiated, global and powerful communications network that provides unparalleled value for our subscribers and consumers.”
The merger is expected to close in the first quarter of 2019, with the merged company expected to be valued at $12.6 billion.
The combined company will focus on satellite communication, which is a crucial market for Charter, which has said it expects to overtake cable and DSL service as the dominant form of internet access by 2025.
Univison’s stock has surged since the announcement, rising nearly 20% since it closed at $21.60 on Wednesday.
Charter’s stock was down nearly 2% in after-hours trading on Thursday.
The deal will also create a new subsidiary, Zoleom, that will focus primarily on digital content.
Zoleos CEO Alexei Vlachos told Bloomberg News the merged entity will be more efficient, but he declined to specify what the new subsidiary will be.
Charter, headquartered in New York, was acquired by Comcast in 2016 for $45.2 billion.
Charter also owns Time Warner Cable, Cablevision, Bright House Networks, and a slew of cable networks.
Unite here: What you need to know about Comcast’s takeover of NBCUniversal article Comcast is currently the third-largest cable operator in the United States, behind AT&T and Verizon.
The Comcast-NBCUniversal merger will give the cable company more clout in television markets like New York City and Los Angeles, while potentially extending Comcast’s reach into more rural areas.
“This transaction gives us a more complete, strategic portfolio of products, services, and brands in an industry that is rapidly changing,” Comcast chairman and CEO Brian Roberts said in the company’s statement.
In addition to the satellite and cable services, Comcast is also in the video business, with plans to launch a new video service later this year.
The company’s plans to bring the cable network back into the television business have also received some pushback from broadcasters, including the Motion Picture Association of America, which said the combined entity will not be able to deliver what they want.
“Comcast has made the television transition, and we continue to be deeply disappointed that the merged entities will not continue to provide us with a competitive television package,” the MPAA said in its letter.