First Annual Meeting Focuses on Charter's Rapid Growth, Goals
BELLEVUE, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 7, 2000--The first-ever meeting of Charter Communications, Inc. (Nasdaq: CHTR) shareholders was held here today at the Meydenbauer Center. Charter became a publicly traded company Nov. 9, 1999, in one of the largest-ever Nasdaq offerings.
As he convened the historic occasion, Jerald L. Kent, President and Chief Executive Officer, told shareholders that "Charter Communications is on schedule in its commitment to build and operate the most advanced broadband communications company in the World, and delivering on the vision of a Wired World(TM) for our customers."
Mr. Kent told shareholders that Charter has nearly tripled in size since the beginning of 1999 as a result of 12 separate acquisitions of other cable television operators and is now the fourth largest cable television operator, serving some 6.2 million customers with nearly 10 million homes passed.
"At the beginning of 1999, we embarked upon one of the biggest challenges ever undertaken by any American company -- to integrate 12 major acquisitions and the merger of Marcus Cable into this Company to achieve the size and scale necessary to efficiently deliver a variety of broadband services over an advanced hybrid fiber-coax infrastructure," Mr. Kent said. "Today, thanks to the dedication, skill and hard work of our nearly 13,000 employees, we're accomplishing what we set out to do.
"Your investment in Charter has allowed us to accomplish this unprecedented growth within the industry by selectively acquiring other highly sought-after companies, and I thank you for this," Mr. Kent said. "Although the current softness in our market sector has contributed to our stock's recent performance, I want you to know I remain optimistic for a substantial return on your investment over time."
In reviewing the company's performance, Mr. Kent said that if all of last year's acquisitions had occurred at the start of 1999, Charter's revenues for the year would have been $2.9 billion and adjusted operating cash flow would have been over $1.4 billion. "Our customer and cash flow growth continue to exceed both industry averages and the expectations of The Street," he said.
Mr. Kent said Charter's management team is focused on three key tasks: the integration of acquired properties, the continuation of the company's $3.5 billion upgrade program and the deployment of digital and data services -- all with an overarching goal of providing the best customer care. "We recognize the challenges we face to realize our vision of a Wired World, a vision that offers opportunity and promise to our customers, to our employees and to you, our investors," he said.
"We continue to aggressively roll out advanced services," Mr. Kent said. "As of March 31, 2000, we had nearly 225,000 digital customers and some 123,000 data customers. With an installed universe of 266,500 digital converters, we continue to see digital revenue per household of approximately $20 per month."
Mr. Kent said demand for Charter Digital Cable(TM) has prompted the Company to increase its goal from 10,000 new customers a week to more than 12,000 customers a week. He said Charter is meeting its goal of adding 2,500 new high-speed Internet customers each week.
At the meeting, shareholders elected Mr. Kent, Paul Allen, Marc Nathanson, Ronald Nelson, Nancy Peretsman, William Savoy and Howard Wood to the Charter Board of Directors.
Charter Communications, a Wired World(TM) company, is among the nation's largest broadband communications companies with some 6.2 million customers. Charter offers an array of advanced broadband services, including cable television under the Charter Cable TV brand; advanced digital video programming services under the Charter Digital Cable(TM) brand and high-speed Internet access via Charter Pipeline (TM). Charter is traded on the Nasdaq National Market under the ticker symbol "CHTR." More information about Charter can be found on the Internet at www.chartercom.com.
Statements in this press release regarding Charter Communications' business which are not historical facts may be "forward-looking statements." Forward-looking statements are inherently subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from any such forward-looking statements are identified in the reports and documents we file from time to time with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
NOTE: A replay of the meeting is available in the Investor section of Charter's web site, www.chartercom.com, following the close of the meeting.
Charter Communications Inc., St. Louis
Anita Lamont, 314-543-2215
Andy Morgan, 314/543-2217