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Cablevision to Offer Special Dividend to Shareholders

Apr 10, 2006  •  Post A Comment

Cablevision Systems said late Friday that it will issue a special $10-per-share dividend to shareholders, sending shares of the Bethpage, N.Y.-based cable operator surging more than 3 percent Monday afternoon.

The dividend will be paid April 24 to shareholders of record as of April 18. The payment covers shareholders of Cablevision’s NY Group Class A and Class B shares. The total cost of the payment is $3 billion, financed with a credit agreement from wholly owned subsidiary CSC Holdings.

The company said it expects the dividend to qualify as a tax-free return of capital to shareholders.

The founding Dolan family, which controls 22 percent of the outstanding shares and 74 percent of the voting power, stands to make more than $600 million from the dividend payment.

The news sent Cablevision shares surging 90 cents, or more than 3 percent, to $28.15 a share at midday Monday.

Cablevision’s move ended months of speculation about whether or not the company would issue the dividend, first floated in October after the company shelved its plan to take its cable operations private.