Comcast-NBC Universal Joint Venture Deal

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

Case Details:


Case Code : BSTR364 For delivery in electronic format: Rs. 300;
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Joint Venture / Merger and Acquisition
Case Length : 19 Pages
Period : 2004-09
Pub Date : 2010
Teaching Note : Not Available
Organization : Comcast Corporation / NBC Universal / GE
Industry : Media and Entertainment
Countries : US


The case examines the proposed joint venture deal between Comcast Corporation (Comcast), the largest cable TV and Internet service provider in the US, and General Electric (GE), the majority equity stake holder in NBC Universal (NBCU), one of the largest entertainment companies in the world. While GE wanted to sell its equity stake in NBCU in order to enhance its focus on core operations, Comcast wanted to enter into a deal which would give it more control over TV and movie programming. Both Comcast and GE were optimistic about realizing the potential synergies from the proposed joint venture deal. However, industry experts opined that the deal between Comcast, a major multichannel video program distributor, and NBCU, a leading video content producer, would hurt competition in the traditional video markets as well as emerging online video markets.

Analysts also raised concerns on the regulatory front. The case analyzes the synergies derived from the deal. It ends with a discussion on the future prospects of the joint venture company.


Study the dynamics of the US cable and entertainment industry.
Understand the rationale for Comcast - NBCU joint venture deal.
Debate whether the deal would be approved by the regulatory authorities or not.
Examine the challenges that the proposed joint venture deal may face.
Analyze the future prospects of the proposed joint venture company.


  Page No.
Introduction 1
Background Note 2
The Deal and its Rationale 5
Potential Synergies 7
The Response 8
The Road Ahead 10
Exhibits 11


Comcast Corporation, Internet Service Provider, NBC Universal, US Department of Justice, Federal Communications Commission, Media and Entertainment, Joint Venture, Consumer Experience, Potential Synergies, Innovation, Antitrust Regulators,, United Technologies Corporation, Cable Programming and Digital Entertainment, Merger and Acquisition, Vivendi, Global Financial Crisis, Regulatory Approvals, Strategic Deal, Pricing of Content, Net Neutrality Rule, Shareholders's Value, Top Five Cable Channels in the US, Total Revenues of US Cable Owners, Combined Assets/Properties Owned by New NBCU

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