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Company: Comcast (CMCSA)
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68%
agree
60 votes

  Triple-play bundling driving revenues

Consumers are interested in bundling their services, and Comcast’s “Triple Play” bundling of cable, Internet, and phone service is one of the most attractive on the market, possibly leading to customers abandoning satellite for Comcast. Moreover, Customers are willing to pay more for premium service, so Comcast’s VoIP and high-priced broadband Internet will be more desirable over cheaper, slower services. In Q4 2008, this bundling strategy enabled the company to increase its revenue by 7%.

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84%
agree
13 votes

  COMCAST Poised To Reap Higher Profits as Verizon Pulls Plug

With the March 26, 2010 announcement from Verizon, that the company is winding down their FIOS network expansion with no plans to compete in other large market areas, COMCAST and other Verizon competitors will reap higher profits going forward with a solid subscriber base coupled with more pricing flexibility. This development warrants a fresh analysis of estimated earnings for Comcast. Upside potential for Comcast shares is now poised to rise within or above a 25-30 range by year end while long term growth will be bolstered further with a void of broadband competition from Verizon.

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70%
agree
10 votes

  Attractive prospect

Comcast is trading at an extremely low valuation relative to its historical multiples, peers, and the broader market. Investor concerns have been varied over the past year:

  • Basic subscriber losses
  • Increased telco competition
  • Increased competition from web-based substitutes
  • Slowing broadband growth
  • Increased regulatory activity
  • Major wireless capital spend
  • No dividend
  • Slow pace of share repurchases

These concerns are valid but only minimally impact the free cash flow generation of this company, which is primarily driven by video pricing increases and reduced capital spending. The company has been clear that 2007 is the peak year for capital spending

Given the slowing (but still rapid) growth and increased risks faced by Comcast, a lower than historically observed multiple is warranted, but at close to 5.0x 2009 EBITDA, it is cheaper than all its cable peers and most S&P 500 companies, even those in declining industries (e.g. rural local exchange carriers). A much higher multiple is warranted for a company with over 20% EBITDA growth over the next 3 years, defensive characteristics, and positive fundamentals.

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71%
agree
7 votes

  Largest base of customers of any cable provider

Comcast has the largest base of subscribers with almost twice as many cable customers as its closest competitor, Time Warner Cable, Comcast thus has the largest base for growth through bundling. This size is particularly important as Comcast has looked inward to expand its revenue through its Triple Play Package

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100%
agree
1 votes

  Company going to start paying a dividend

Comcast is going start paying a dividend and has announced a buyback of $7 Billion over the next 2 years in some encouraging, share holder friendly actions. Furthermore, many analysts have concurred that Comcast shares are undervalued and worth more. [1]

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100%
agree
1 votes

  Non-accretive wireless build-out unlikely

Another recent investor concern has been around the potential for Comcast to spend most of its free cash flow to build an expensive, low return wireless network; given that the company is not bidding the upcoming 700 MHz spectrum auction and Comcast's historical discipline, a non-accretive wireless build-out is unlikely.

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66%
agree
3 votes

  Broadband business holds steady

Broadband growth has slowed, but the absolute number of new broadband subscribers has held relatively steady. Longer term, US broadband penetration will reach similar levels to other industrialized countries. Even if broadband growth is no longer a major catalyst, it will continue to grow and contribute to cash flow.

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0%
agree
0 votes

  Even Warren Buffett is Holding Comcast - (Hint Hint)

Maybe looking at what Warren Buffett is holding right now might offer some insight on this subject: COMCAST (CMCSA) ... Not only did COMCAST just win their battle with the FCC, but just last week VERIZON announced they are pulling the plug on further FIOS expansion, which will only propel Comcast and other competitors into higher earnings territory. Warren Buffett has it right again!!!

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0%
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0 votes

  Comcast acquires NBC Universal

Comcast, the largest U.S. cable-television company by subscriptions has acquired GE's NBC Universal, assuming the deal passes regulatory review. NBC Universal, is an operator of broadcast network, film studio, theme parks, and cable channels including USA, CNBC, MSNBC and Bravo.

NBC Universal had recently been one of the most profitable units of the company. But with a downturn in advertising in the last year, the television and movie parts of the company reported a decline of 41 percent in profit.

The deal benefits Comcast greatly because it gives it a segment of GE that has been tremendously powerful in the past, and could return to that level of productivity given Comcast's strength in cable and digital programming. The deal has raised questions regarding antitrust, but still should go through in one of the biggest media transactions in recent history.

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0%
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0 votes

  Legal Victories

There have been numerous recent regulatory actions against the cable industry by the FCC, but none of these hurt Comcast's core business model. In fact, the increased regulatory interest is a sign that the cable industry as a whole is doing very well. There has been opposition in Congress to the FCC's actions and Comcast has sucessfully overturned FCC decisions in court in the past.

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0%
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0 votes

  Comcast winning in critical areas

Basic subscriber losses are real and will likely continue as competition rises, but for every basic subscriber Comcast loses to a Verizon Communications (VZ) or The DirecTV Group (DTV) , it gains 7-10 Comcast Digital Voice (CDV) customers. Furthermore, basic subscriber losses are generally customers at lower price points and the new CDV customers gained are far more sticky since they likely take a triple-play bundle. So far, telco competition has been pricing rationally (Verizon is acutally increasing prices for its FiOS TV service) and will likely stay that way given the high capital spend requirements of the required telco plant upgrade (telcos are the bigger loser in a price war because they are at a cost disadvantage relative to cable). Competition from substitute forms of entertainment has increased in recent years, but this has not slowed the US household appetite for television, which has be increasing over the past few years, despite all the new entertainment options. This is very positive, as it implies consumers place a high value on television and Comcast will be able to more effecitvely increase pricing.

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