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Comcast yields to AT&T over MediaOne

But defeat brings $1.5 billion and two million subscribers as pay off

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Updated Comcast has agreed to allow AT&T to go ahead with its $56.4 billion takeover of US cable company MediaOne, a 50 per cent shareholder in UK cellular provider One-2-One and owner of 30 per cent of UK local cable TV company Telewest. AT&T's bid for MediaOne was finally accepted yesterday, but the prospect of a raised bid from Comcast remained a clear possibility. That won't happen now. Instead, it will receive two million cable subscribers from both AT&T and MediaOne, and, in return, agree not to pursue its interest in MediaOne. In addition, Comcast will net a $1.5 billion termination fee for the ending of the original deal with MediaOne, signed in March. Comcast will pay a total of $9.2 billion for the subscribers -- 750,000 initially, followed by the remaining 1.25 million over three years. Comcast will pay AT&T in AT&T stock it owns and Comcast shares. It will also sell AT&T phone services. Meanwhile, Microsoft still remains a wild card in the deal. As reported here yesterday, the Great Stan, as a shareholder in Comcast, would be rather keen to have it win the deal, and was believed to be devising ways of ensuring that outcome. Comcast's agreement with AT&T would seem to put a lid on that plan, but Microsoft may yet attempt a bid on its own. ® See also Microsoft, AOL enter MediaOne bidding war

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