Shares of top-10 cable operator Mediacom continued to rise above the price CEO Rocco Commisso has agreed to pay shareholders to take the company private. The stock price rose to a 52-week high of $8.80, slightly higher than what Commisso agreed to pay last fall.
The potential impact on Commisso's proposal is unclear, and Mediacom declined comment. Mediacom and Commisso entered into an agreement on the $8.75 price in November after ratification by a special committee of its board.
A shareholder vote could take place in March. Mediacom's share price topped that $8.75 amount Monday and rose again Tuesday.
One reason for the increase could be a proposed settlement in lawsuits filed by shareholders against Mediacom, its board of directors and Commisso, which effectively alleges Commisso's buyout price is too low.
The shareholders in question would receive 25 cents a share as part of the settlement -- minus attorneys' fees and other costs. But that could indicate an ability by Commisso to pay up to $9 a share to effect the buyout.
Cable stocks have also been performing well lately, indicating that the company may have considerably more growth on the public market. Mediacom is the country's eighth-largest cable operator.
A special committee comprised of two independent Mediacom directors, who had recommended against accepting previous lower offers from Commisso, endorsed the $8.75 proposal in the fall. In part, it relied on analysis by Barclays Capital to reach its conclusion.
The offer price would be a large premium over Commisso's original $6 offer in May, and a 28% increase above the price when the $8.75 offer emerged.
Commisso founded the company in 1995 and took it public in 2000.