Competitors say Comcast, NBC merger could cost consumers $2B
The trade group American Cable Association released an economic analysis on Monday that purports that Comcast’s proposed merger with NBC Universal could result in $2.4 billion in extra costs to consumers over nearly a decade.
ACA represents small and medium-size cable service providers.
With no conditions to the merger, the combined cable and media giant would be able to use its sheer size for “unrestrained pricing power,” said the group, which has criticized the lack of conditions.
The commissioned report by former FCC economist William Rogerson said those costs would come from Comcast-NBCU potentially charging cable service rivals such as RCN, Time Warner Cable and Cablevision higher retransmission and other fees to carry NBCU content. The merger would also allow Comcast to charge higher fees to cable competitors who want the Regional Sports Network and other Comcast programming.
Comcast refuted the report’s findings, saying it used flawed data and contradicted available data.
“After having more than nine months to make its case, and after two prior attempts that we thoroughly rebutted, ACA is making an obvious attempt to further delay the approval of the Comcast NBCU transaction,” said Sena Fitzmaurice, a spokeswoman for Comcast. “ACA’s efforts should be rejected by the FCC on both substantive and procedural grounds.”
Other posts of interest:
Proposed Comcast-NBC merger ignited TV access battle
| November 8, 2010; 2:23 PM ET
Categories: Comcast, Consumers, DOJ, FCC
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