Liberty Broadband Corporation and GCI Liberty have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Liberty Broadband has agreed to acquire GCI Liberty in a stock-for-stock merger. Both companies are ultimately controlled by US cable tycoon John Malone. Liberty Broadband’s businesses consist of its interest in US cable giant Charter Communications (25%) and Skyhook (formerly TruePosition, 100%). Meanwhile, GCI Liberty’s principal assets consist of its Alaskan full-service telco subsidiary GCI Holdings (100%), as well as non-controlling interests in Liberty Broadband (24%), Charter Communications (2%) and LendingTree (27%).
The two parties expect the merger to generate savings on public company and overhead costs; simplify administrative and management complexity; aim to reduce trading discounts to underlying equities; and improve flexibility for future strategic combinations. At the closing of the combination, former holders of GCI Liberty common stock are expected to own shares representing approximately 30.6% of the total number of outstanding Liberty Broadband common shares. The companies expect the combination to close in the first half of 2021, subject to potential COVID-19 related delays.
Greg Maffei, the President and CEO of Liberty Broadband and GCI Liberty, commented: ‘This process was driven by independent special committees of Liberty Broadband and GCI Liberty, and John Malone and I fully endorse the combination. The transaction is financially attractive and beneficial for both companies.’