French telecommunications group Altice SA is in talks with several banks about raising debt for a bid for Time Warner Cable Inc, the second-largest U.S. cable operator, according to people familiar with the matter.
The talks underscore Altice's intention to pursue a deal with Time Warner Cable, which is also being courted by Charter Communications Inc after Comcast Corp abandoned its $45.2 billion offer for Time Warner Cable last month over U.S. antitrust concerns.
Altice is in discussions with banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co, Nomura Co Ltd, BNP Paribas SA, Societe Generale, Barclays Plc and Royal Bank of Canada about a financing package to support a proposed acquisition, the people said.
The size of that package has yet to be determined, some of the people said. The sources asked not to be identified because the talks are confidential.
The financing could comprise of a dollar-denominated high-yield bond as well as loans, one of the sources added. Should Altice proceed with a bid for Time Warner Cable, it will seek not to burden its balance sheet unnecessarily, another person said.
Altice declined to comment, while spokespeople for the banks either declined to comment or did not respond immediately to requests for comment.
(By Liana B. Baker and Claire Ruckin; Additional reporting by Leila Abboud in Paris; Editing by Tiffany Wu)