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Triple exchange clears the line

A complex debt exchange during a merger transaction saved AT&T Broadband and Comcast the expense and the hassle of raising new debt. Bankers won’t want other companies to follow suit.

AT&T gets an adjustment

The MERGER OF AT&T Broadband and Comcast was finally completed on November 18 2002, creating the largest broadband and cable company in the US. The aggregate enterprise value of the merged company is $60 billion, including stock and debt.

It was an impressive achievement and the final step in an AT&T corporate restructuring programme that had begun in October 2000 with the pledge to spin off two of its businesses, AT&T Wireless and AT&T Broadband. The spin-off of AT&T Wireless took place in July 2001. Then Comcast bid for AT&T Broadband's business and AT&T agreed to a merger. This left a slimmed-down AT&T at the end of 2002 focused on AT&T Business and AT&T Consumer, its traditional communications businesses.

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