Charter Shares Rise on News of Debt Exchange

Aug 24, 2005  •  Post A Comment

Shares in Charter Communications rallied Wednesday after the debt-laden cable operator said it was launching an $8.4 billion debt exchange designed to give the company breathing room as it tries to improve its business.

Charter’s stock rose as much as 30 percent Wednesday morning after the company announced its massive debt restructuring plan, which includes exchanging outstanding debt for $3.53 billion in new debt securities due in 2015, and issuing $4.26 billion in new debt due in 2014 and 2015 to replace bonds that are due in 2011 and 2012.

Analysts believe Charter will cut its $19.2 billion debt load by as much as $1.5 billion, which will allow it to focus on attracting and retaining customers at a time when the company is duking it out with satellite operators.

The move comes on day three of under new CEO Neil Smit, a former America Online executive who has expertise in customer service and retention.