Time Warner Cable CEO Rob Marcus Takes Final Call28 Apr, 2016 By: Erik Gruenwedel
On the heels of regulatory approval of Charter Communications’ $65 billion acquisition of Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, TWC CEO Rob Marcus hardly seemed worried about his future on the company's abbreviated April 28 first-quarter fiscal call.
And with good reason. With the acquisition creating the second-largest domestic broadband provider and third-largest video provider, Marcus is in line to reap more than $90 million in compensation exiting TWC (according to a regulatory filing) — despite only holding the top position since January 2014. He had served as president and COO since December 2010 and as CFO from 2008 through mid-2011.
While analysts called in wishing Marcus and senior management well, the executive said he and his team had put in place changes he believed would be embraced by Charter. The cabler agreed to regulatory stipulations mandating no data caps on Internet subscribers for seven years, in addition to refraining from hardball negotiations with content holders regarding third-party subscription streaming services.
When asked how the new Charter would adapt to the strict regulations, Marcus seemed unconcerned. He said speculation regarding interconnection fees charged to streaming services such as Netflix generated more media attention than actual revenue.
“Interconnection as a revenue source has always been overrated,” Marcus said, adding that the fees collected are “exceedingly small.”
“We feel great about the future of broadband, with or without usage-based pricing. The recent quarters’ results are just another reflection of how terrific that business is.”
Indeed, Time Warner Cable reported high-speed data net additions of 314,000 in the quarter. It added 23,000 video subscribers, ending the period with 10.84 million video subs.
“If the numbers are good, the meeting is short,” quipped Marcus. And at 36 minutes (versus 60 minutes), it was.