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Dolans Withdraw Proposal to Take Cablevision Private, Recommend $3B Dividend

Oct 25, 2005  •  Post A Comment

The family controlling Cablevision Systems withdrew its proposal to take the cable company private late Monday, instead recommending the cable operator pay a special dividend valued at $3 billion.

According to a statement released by the company Tuesday, Cablevision officials received a letter from the controlling Dolan family informing them that they were withdrawing their proposal to take Cablevision’s cable unit private and to spin off its Rainbow Media Holdings unit to the public.

The change of heart comes more than three months after Cablevision Chairman Charles Dolan and his son CEO James Dolan first proposed taking the cable operation private in a $7.9 billion deal.

Some observers had expected the Dolans’ plan to drum up interest in the cable assets, which many analysts considered the most profitable in the industry. However, none materialized and Cablevision’s stock barely budged over the long term.

Cablevision officials said its board would consider the special dividend request but stressed no decision has been made on the matter.