Cablevision CEO said he wants a cable deal in New York

CHICAGO – The CEO of Cablevision said he wants deals with New York cable operators.

Cablevision Systems Corp. is focused in the greater New York City area and has 3.1 million customers. New York is also a big market for the country’s second-biggest cable company, Time Warner Cable Inc.

Cablevision CEO James Dolan was speaking on a stage Wednesday with CEOs of most of the country’s biggest cable companies, excepting Comcast, at an event at an industry trade show in Chicago. Comcast Corp.’s CEO spoke on Tuesday.

Comcast’s $45 billion bid for Time Warner Cable recently fell apart because of regulators’ concerns about the combined company’s power over the Internet and the growing online video industry.

But industry consolidation is expected to continue, with many predicting that Charter Communications Inc. will try to buy Time Warner Cable.

The CEO of Time Warner Cable, Rob Marcus, said Wednesday that he was focused on Time Warner Cable and had no further comment.

When asked about potential acquisitions, Charter CEO Thomas Rutledge said, “The world is full of possibilities but I can’t tell you any of them.”

The Comcast-Time Warner Cable deal would have created a national behemoth with about 30 per cent of the country’s video subscribers and more than half of its high-speed broadband customers.

But Dolan said consolidation of local marketplaces would also benefit cable companies. It “would provide a great deal of ingenuity and access to much more resources for customers and lower prices,” he said.

“If New York was operated like one market, you would see things like Wi-Fi distributed throughout the entire marketplace,” Dolan added.

Even if they share a region, cable companies do not typically compete with each other for the same homes.

Verizon’s FiOS service does compete directly with the cable operators and is available in New York City. When asked if he was interested in a deal with FiOS, Dolan said no.