Thread regarding Altice USA (Cablevision) layoffs

High noon looms for Altice’s Patrick Drahi

High noon looms for Altice’s Patrick Drahi

Every cable cowboy has to face the sheriff sometime. Franco-Israeli billionaire Patrick Drahi, a protege of boot-wearing, ranch-owning industry legend John Malone, knows it.

After a bruising 2017, where Drahi’s trigger hand was shaken by disappointing results and a battering of his company Altice’s stock price, he can expect more run-ins with France’s political powers.

Despite a racy expansion in the US, France remains Altice’s biggest source of revenue — and its biggest problem.

Drahi has duelled with his country’s ruling class before, much like Malone, who in the heyday of cable giant TCI fended off accusations of mafia-like monopoly tactics from Al Gore — as well as Darth Vader slurs.

While building his empire, Drahi gobbled up cable businesses across France and frustrated suppliers, customers and staff with subsequent cost cuts, to the annoyance of consumer watchdogs and local politicians.

Still, by 2006 he’d clambered to the top of France’s cable mountain, buying assets from Malone himself to unite almost all the country’s subscribers under his banner.

But it was his 2014 fight for mobile operator SFR that really brought down the wrath of corporate France, as well as extra scrutiny from regulators and politicians.

Insurer AXA, the Dassault family, the Pinault family, state bank CDC and others backed his establishment rival Martin Bouygues. Even cost-slashing telecoms billionaire Xavier Niel, no friend to France’s corporate chieftains, opposed Drahi.

What helped Altice win was a pledge to invest billions in its network, protect jobs and act as the guarantor of four-way rivalry in French telecoms versus Bouygues, Niel’s Free and Orange.

Yet the anointed protector of the competitive environment is also looking like its biggest victim. SFR’s cost cuts and price increases haven’t stopped customers from going elsewhere or revenue from declining.

Altice’s recent profit warning hurt its standing on financial markets and raised the prospect of asset sales to cut €50bn of debt. More heavy spending on content looks a stretch.

Rivals smell blood and are painting Drahi as the sick man of the market, rather than its white knight. Orange CEO Stephane Richard has lambasted Altice’s business model, operating performance and spending.

Barring any sudden reversal in performance, an uncomfortable 2018 is in store for Drahi. More aggressive job cuts would anger politicians, and so would back-pedalling on commitments to invest in network capacity. Regulators have already fined Altice for missing targets on fibre roll-outs. Drahi has been a big supporter of Emmanuel Macron, so might hope for some help from on high. But competitors will seize on any slips.

Even if Drahi threw in the towel and put SFR up for sale, a deal — via a sale to Bouygues, for example — would have to clear many political hurdles to bring four operators down to three. That doesn’t seem likely right now.

So the tycoon is pretty much stuck with making the most of past cost savings and content spending, combined with tighter management. He’ll have to do this while not getting caught in the crossfire of angry investors and a French sheriff who demands he sticks by old promises. He needs to be quicker on his feet in France than he’s been so far.


by | Post ID:
1012 views | 7 replies (last )
Comment! It's anonymous! Reply to this post anonymously by submitting the form near the bottom of the page!

7 replies (most recent on top)

Hurry up and fail so we can be owned by a “real” company not some penny pinching cheap f---.

by | Post ID:

good for these bastards can't wait till this fake company collapse.

by | Post ID:

So go get a job as analyst and write a story

by | Post ID:

It would be nice if there were some analysis on how this will or will not impact the USA companies

by | Post ID:

Bro - How do you format text this nicely?

by | Post ID:

Very proud that I work with someone that knows how to copy and paste from the apple stock app

by | Post ID:

Wish nothing but misery for this loser.

by | Post ID:

Post a reply


Related pages

infoblox stockfnc oxford msoracle jobs santa clarasear holdings careerscws corporate housing austin txlockheed is&gsvanguard brokerage optionmetlife p&cjcp employee discounthp job cuts ukhhgregg muncie indiscovery communications store galleria fort lauderdaletime warner cable customer service lincoln nepcm el segundoamerican apparel tickersan jacinto memorial hospitaluniversal technical institute irving txchesapeake energy corporation oklahoma city oktillys irvineutc connecticutaspen technology layoffsebay stock tickerapple store oak brookcabellas augustaucla medical center ronald reaganpepsico white plainswells fargo careers san antoniohhgregg employee discountverizon store virginiapearsons education jobsnational oilwell varco pampa txhertz equipment jobshoneywell phoenixnational oil varco jobsnoven pharmaceuticals stockwhere is halliburton locatedhaemoneticrexnord milwaukeemedtronic warsaw incaterpillar seguin jobssamson oil & gas limitedeternabond.comnbty.combaker hughes pescaratextron providencecenturylink mergerruby tuesdays middletown nyat&t stores in chicagoapple store hingham massachusettsat&t store wallingford ctmattel glassdoorwalmart sams club job applicationmetlife jobs raleighnews 12 westchester trafficeastview mall apple storednow lpjacobs engineering group pasadenafair oaks mall applewellsfargi.commedco franklin lakestime warner cable layoffscorporate jet fleettractor supply assistant manager salarylayoff laws californiasabre layoffsglobalfoundries employee reviewsshell jobs houstonruby tuesday princeton nj