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Time Warner Cable's Next CEO Says He's Ready to Run Company for 'Long Haul'

There Are Advantages to Consolidation, Marcus Says, but No Rush to Sell Either

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Time Warner Cable may not be in as much of a rush to sell the company as some have suggested.

Rob Marcus
Rob Marcus Credit: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Speaking at the annual UBS Global Media and Communications Conference in New York on Monday, incoming Time Warner Cable CEO Rob Marcus said management is prepared to run the company for the "long haul."

Time Warner Cable has been at the center of takeover talk in recent weeks, with reports indicating that Charter Communications, Comcast and Cox are interested in acquiring the company.

Mr. Marcus, who currently serves as chief operating officer and will succeed Glenn Britt as CEO next month, said his responsibility is to shareholders and that he is open to a deal if it benefits investors.

There are benefits to consolidation in the cable industry, including reducing programming costs, he said.

That's the kind of talk that has earned the company recent headlines such as "Time Warner Cable's Next CEO Ready to Sell If Price Is Right."

But when Mr. Marcus takes the reins, he said Monday, his focus will be on customer service and making the company more performance-oriented. He said he is committed to fixing Time Warner Cable's residential business by investing in reliability and product differentiation.

Time Warner Cable took a major subscriber hit following its prolonged carriage negotiations with CBS, which resulted in a month-long blackout in late summer.

Mr. Marcus declined to address upcoming carriage negotiations with Viacom and the Yes Network.

When it comes to streaming videos impact on cable, Mr. Marcus said he views such so-called "over-the-top" services as a positive for broadband cable providers -- such as his company -- and that he would also consider making services like Netflix available on set-top boxes.

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