- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 28, 2002

NEW YORK (AP) Adelphia Communications is reportedly negotiating to sell its cable systems in Los Angeles to Microsoft co-founder Paul G. Allen as part of its effort to stay out of bankruptcy court.
The deal would involve 1.2 million subscribers to be sold for about $3,300 each, or $4 billion, the New York Times reported in yesterday's editions, citing a person with knowledge of the talks who was not identified.
Other potential buyers, including Cox Cable, the Blackstone Group and Apollo Advisers, were also reviewing financial data, the newspaper said.
It wasn't immediately clear whether Mr. Allen would buy Adelphia's Los Angeles assets himself or make the purchase through Charter Communications, the St. Louis-based cable company of which he is the biggest shareholder and chairman of the board.
Efforts to contact Adelphia, Charter and Mr. Allen for comment were unsuccessful. Yesterday was a national holiday, Memorial Day, and most businesses were closed.
Adelphia, the nation's sixth-largest cable provider, has been looking to sell assets since revealing in March that it had failed to report $3.1 billion in loan guarantees it had made to entities controlled by its founder, John Rigas.
The company announced earlier this month that it would solicit formal bids for systems in the Los Angeles area, in Florida with about 750,000 subscribers, in Virginia with about 575,000 subscribers and elsewhere in the Southeast with 225,000 subscribers.
Mr. Rigas resigned as Adelphia's chief executive officer last week. He and his three sons also gave up their seats on the company's board of directors and agreed to place their super-voting shares in the company in a trust out of their control.
The family has also turned over $1 billion in assets to Adelphia to help cover the loans, but analysts said the company would still need to sell assets to stay out of bankruptcy.
Since the disclosure on March 27 the company's stock price has plummeted from $20.39 to $2.77. Adelphia was threatened with de-listing from the Nasdaq after it failed to file its annual financial report. It also faces stockholder lawsuits, a Securities and Exchange Commission probe and grand jury investigations in New York and Pennsylvania.


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