Comcast reaches deal to send Indiana customers to new company

'SpinCo' would operate central Indiana service

INDIANAPOLIS - In an effort to appease federal regulators mulling a merger with Time Warner Cable, Comcast has reached an agreement to dump customers in Indiana and several other states to a start-up company to be operated by a rival.

Under the agreement, Comcast's customers in the Indianapolis area will become part of a new entity called "SpinCo."

The new company will be managed by Charter Communications, currently the fourth-largest cable company in the U.S. After SpinCo acquires some customers from Comcast and Time Warner, Charter would become the second-largest cable company in the U.S., with about 5.7 million combined subscribers.

The shuffling of Indiana customers is contingent on federal regulators approving Comcast's merger with Time Warner.

Under the agreement, Charter will own 33 percent of SpinCo and will operate the start-up company, while shareholders of Comcast will own two-thirds of the new company.

Comcast is currently a cable provider in many suburban Indianapolis communities, while Brighthouse Networks, closely affiliated with Time Warner, provides cable to most downtown areas.

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