The multi-billion dollar merger talks between the top two cable companies of the United States, Comcast and Time Warner Cable (TWC) came to an end on Friday amid heavy federal regulatory pushbacks.
The plan of acquisition was abandoned by Comcast after both US Department of Justice and Federal Communications Commission (FCC) blocked the merger after raising concerns that the deal would give the company an unfair advantage over other players in the cable TV and web-based services market.
Announcing the development, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts issued a statement this morning saying, “Today, we move on. Of course, we would have liked to bring our great products to new cities, but we structured this deal so that if the government didn’t agree, we could walk away.”
Commenting over the end of the merger talks, TWC chief executive Robert Marcus said, “Time Warner Cable is a one-of-a-kind asset that continues getting stronger, thanks to the company’s commitment to bring great experiences to our customers.”
Reacting over the termination of the deal between the two leading cable companies, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler said, “The proposed transaction would have created a company with the most broadband and the video subscribers in the nation alongside the ownership of significant programming interests.”
Echoing similar sentiments on the failed merger, Attorney General Eric Holder said, “This is a victory not only for the Department of Justice, but also for content and streaming services providers who work to bring innovative products to consumers across America and around the world.”
The proposed acquisition deal, which was formally announced by the companies last February, had received sever criticism from several politicians, media firm executives, rival cable companies, industry and consumer groups, who had raised concerns that the merger would lead to the creation of a monolith with too much control over what Americans watch on TV or do online.