Feeds

Telewest CEO ousted in boardroom putsch

Debt swap 'close to inevitable'

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

Adam Singer, Telewest's CEO, was deposed yesterday in a boardroom putsch orchestrated by the firm's non-executive directors.

His replacement, Charles Burdick, formerly FD, is to concentrate on navigating the company through a 'close to inevitable' debt for equity swap in coming months.

In an interview, Burdick said his predecessor was the wrong man to lead the company through restructuring.

"As we go through the next six months, as we sort out our balance sheet, it is very important that we focus on maintaining our leadership in broadband data and having a ruthless focus on costs.

"What is not needed is a more visionary, strategic approach to life... It is very important the operations are focused on the way they are today rather than the world as it might be in five years' time."

Telewest today released its half yearly results. All the consumer figures are going in the right direction, but the business division saw revenue falls compared with last year's. interims. Group turnover advanced 4 per cent to £648m (£674m) and Earnings Before Bad Stuff (EBS) jumped 30 per cent to £184m (£142m). Costs are down too - with Capex (mostly cable laying) falling 25 per cent.

Revenues per household are up seven per cent to 41.72 (£39.07) and the company claims 192,000 broadband customers, of which 15,000 have signed up for the firm's new 1MB service.

Good stuff, but not enough to satisfy interest and capital repayments on the firm's £3.5bn debt. Telewest used to look relatively healthy alongside NTL, but recent restructuring has seen its bigger colleague restore its balance sheet to something like sanity. This in turn has increased pressure on Telewest to reach accommodation with its banks and bondholders. The UK cable endgame will see NTL and Telewest merged with Liberty, the US cable giant and 25 per cent stakeholder in Telewest, commanding a significant, perhaps controlling, presence in the enlarged entity. But first Telewest has to get its act together.

In a statement today, Telewest said:

"As we communicated to our shareholders on 4 July 2002, our board has concluded that it is in the best interest of Telewest to enter into discussions with the Bondholders' Committee and, if approached, Liberty Media to establish whether a proposal which could command the support of the board is capable of being agreed. Our board will continue to progress all available options in order to arrive at a solution, which is fair and equitable to all stakeholders. Detailed discussions will not begin until we have obtained the necessary waivers and consents from our banks." ®

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS – PCs, slabs and mobes
Phone egg, meet desktop chicken - your mother
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
Microsoft: We're making ONE TRUE WINDOWS to rule us all
Enterprise, Windows still power firm's shaky money-maker
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.