Liberty Global

Liberty Global plc
Public limited company
NASDAQ-100 Components (LBTYA and LBTYK)
Industry Telecommunications
Founded 2005 in Douglas County, Colorado, United States
Headquarters Denver[1]
Key people
John C. Malone (Chairman)
Michael Fries (President and CEO)
Balan Nair (Chief Technology Officer)
Charlie Bracken (Chief Financial Officer)
Products Broadband internet, cable television, telephony, mobile, direct-broadcast satellite
Revenue Increase US$ 18.3 billion (2015)[2]
Increase US$ 2.3 billion (2015)[2]
Total assets Decrease US$ 67.867 billion (2015)[3]
Total equity Decrease US$ 10.174 billion (2015)[3]
Number of employees
47,000 (2016)[1]

Liberty Global plc is an American international telecommunications and television company. It was formed in 2005 by the merger of the international arm of Liberty Media and UGC (UnitedGlobalCom).[4] Liberty Global is the largest broadband internet service provider outside the US.[1]

Liberty Global had an annual revenue of $18.3 billion in 2015, with operations in 30 countries and 47,000 employees by 2016. Its cable services pass 55.8 million homes, with 28.6 million customers or 59 million RGUs (video, internet, and voice subscribers).[2][1][5]


Liberty Global Inc. was founded in 2005 when Liberty Media International, Inc. (LMI) and UnitedGlobalCom, Inc. (UGC) merged. LMI and UGC became subsidiaries of Liberty Global. The new entity had operations in 18 countries and networks over approximately 23 million homes, making it one of the largest broadband services companies in the world.[6][7]

Liberty acquired German company Unitymedia in November 2009 for $5.2 billion. Unitymedia was Liberty's first German acquisition and the largest private-equity exit in Europe in 2009.[8] In 2010, Liberty sold its stake in Jupiter Telecommunications, a Japanese telecommunications-services provider as Liberty shifted its resources back toward Europe.[9]

In January 2013, Liberty Global raised its stake in Belgium-based Telenet from 50.2% to 58%.[10] In June 2013, Liberty Global acquired British cable group Virgin Media for $24 billion in cash and stock.[11][12] The agreement expanded Liberty into Europe's largest cable market. The acquisition was ranked as one of the 10 largest cable deals of all time.[13] Liberty agreed on 28 October to sell Chellomedia for $1.035 billion except for its Benelux unit to AMC Networks.[10] It was reported that this acquisition would make Liberty Global the largest broadband company in the world.[4]

Liberty Global announced it would be acquiring Dutch cable company Ziggo for €10 billion in January 2014. The acquisition was completed in November 2014, when the services of UPC Nederland began to be merged into the new business.[14] Liberty Global and Discovery Communications became joint owners of All3Media in May 2014 in a £500 million joint deal.[15][16][17] In July 2014, Liberty Global acquired a 6.4% stake in ITV plc, valued at £481 million.[18] Liberty's stake in the company increased to 9.9% in July 2015.[19][20]

In June 2015, Vodafone confirmed talks with Liberty Global focused on potential partnerships, but denied that a full merger was in the works.[21][22][23] Liberty Global invested in Guavus, a data analytics company, in September 2015.[24]

In November 2015, Liberty Global announced its acquisition of Cable & Wireless Communications. The $5.3 billion deal would expand Liberty Global into the Caribbean.[25][26][27] The acquisition was completed in May 2016.[1] In 2015, Liberty established the stock Liberty Latin American & Caribbean (LiLAC) focusing on Panama and the Caribbean with assets in Chile and Puerto Rico.[28][29] Liberty Global paid approximately $195 million for a 3.4% stake in Lions Gate Entertainment Group in November 2015. Liberty CEO Mike Fries joined the Lion's Gate board of directors as part of the acquisition.[30][31][32]

In February 2016, it was announced that Vodafone and Liberty Global would merge Dutch operations. Liberty's Dutch subsidiary, Ziggo, would work with Vodafone's mobile network.[33][34] Vodafone paid Liberty €1 billion as part of the joint venture valued at €3.5 billion.[35][36] The deal was approved by the European Commission in August 2016.[37] Liberty invested £7.5million in global broadband cable network Technetix in July 2016.[38][39]

Horizon TV

Horizon TV is Liberty Global's flagship platform with more than 10 million first-generation Horizon TV devices sold.

Liberty Global launched Horizon TV, a box to stream to TVs, in 2012.[40] H2, an upgraded version of the Horizon box, was launched in 2013. The new system included an upgraded remote control with a QWERTY keyboard. A secondary box connects wirelessly to the main device allowing TV, DVR and VoD streaming to multiple rooms in a subscriber's house.[41] Liberty partnered with ActiveVideo in 2013 to include ActiveVideo's CloudTV on the Horizon boxes.[42] Twitter was integrated into Horizon's mobile app library in 2016. The addition allowed live tweets to be overlaid onto the screen of a program being broadcast.[43][44] Also in 2016, Horizon TV was launched in Austria, making it available in all three German-speaking countries that Liberty Global operates in.[45]


Liberty Global operates through the following subsidiaries:



Liberty Global's operations in the Americas consists of Liberty Puerto Rico, a provider of pay TV, Internet, and telephone services in Puerto Rico, and VTR, a Chilean cable provider of television, telephone, mobile and internet services. Through the acquisition of Cable and Wireless Communications, Liberty Global has become the owner of the largest pay-TV and broadband provider in the Caribbean. In addition, the company also owns CWC's operations in the Seychelles named Cable and Wireless Seychelles.


Liberty Global serves 12 countries in Europe,[47] and is the largest cable operator in Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Ireland, the Netherlands, Poland, Slovakia, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 Tamara Chuang (May 20, 2016). "Liberty Global doesn't make money in Denver, but moved its headquarters here. Here's why.". The Denver Post. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  2. 1 2 3 Mari Silbey (February 16, 2016). "Liberty Global Presses Pause on 4K, WiFi First Hopes". Light Reading. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  3. 1 2 "Annual Report 2015" (PDF). Liberty Global. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  4. 1 2 "Liberty Global to buy Virgin Media for $23.3bn". BBC News. 6 February 2013. Retrieved 6 February 2013.
  5. "Liberty Global Reports Q2 and H1 2016 Results" (PDF). Liberty Global. August 4, 2016. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  6. Time Richardson (June 16, 2005). "Liberty, UGC complete merger". The Register. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  7. Amy Bryer (January 18, 2005). "Liberty Media International, UnitedGlobal merge". Denver Business Journal. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  8. "Liberty Global to Buy Unitymedia For $5.2 Billion". The New York Times. November 13, 2009. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  9. Jeffrey McCraken, Daisuke Wakabayahi (January 25, 2010). "Liberty Global to Sell Stake in Jupiter". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  10. 1 2 Tartaglione, Nancy. (28 October 2013) AMC Networks To Pay $1B For Liberty Global’s Chellomedia. Accessed on 28 October 2013.
  11. Dana Cimilluca, Lilly Vitorovich, Anupreeta Das (Feb 5, 2013). "Liberty Global to Acquire Virgin Media". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  12. Juliette Garside (February 6, 2013). "Virgin Media bought for £15bn by Liberty Global". The Guardian. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  13. Mark Scott, Eric Pfanner (February 5, 2013). "Liberty Global Reaches Deal for Virgin Media". The New York Times. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  14. Briel, Robert (27 January 2014). "Liberty Global to acquire Ziggo for €10bn". Broadband TV News. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
  15. Mark Sweney (May 8, 2014). "All3Media sold to Discovery and Liberty Global in deal worth £500m". The Guardian. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  16. Georg Szalai (September 23, 2014). "Discovery, Liberty Global Complete Acquisition of U.K. Producer All3Media". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  17. Anne-Sylvaine Chassany, Henry Mance (May 8, 2014). "Liberty Global and Discover agree £550m deal for UK's All3media". Financial Times. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  18. Clover, Julian (17 July 2014). "Liberty Global makes £481m investment in ITV". Broadband TV News. Retrieved 17 July 2014.
  19. "Liberty Global increases ITV stake to 9.9% but denies takeover plan". The Guardian. July 31, 2015. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  20. Henry Mance (July 31, 2015). "John Malone's Liberty Global increased stake in ITV". Financial Times. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  21. Thomson, Amy (17 September 2014). "Vodafone-Liberty Global Deal Is Way to End Duel: Real M&A". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 8 July 2015.
  22. Oscar Williams-Grut (June 5, 2015). "This could be the beginning of the end of Vodafone". Business Insider. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  23. Ben Chu (June 5, 2015). "Vodafone confirms talks with Liberty Global, but quashes talk of merger". Independent. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  24. "Liberty Global Invests in Big Data Analytics Company Gauvus, A Step Closer to IoT?". IoT League. September 15, 2015. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  25. "Liberty Global to Acquire Cable and Wireless in $5.3 Billion Deal". Bloomberg. 17 November 2015. Retrieved 17 November 2015.
  26. Ali Jaafar (November 17, 2015). "John Malone's Liberty Global Acquires Cable & Wireless for $5.3 Billion". Deadline Hollywood.
  27. Jennifer Saba (November 20, 2015). "Cable & Wireless Looks Past John Malone's Complex Deal". The New York Times. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  28. Shalini Ramachandran (November 16, 2015). "Liberty Global to Buy Cable & Wireless Communications for $5.3 Billion". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  29. Patrick Hoyos (May 17, 2016). "Liberty Global completes acquisition of Cable & Wireless Communications". The Broad Street Journal. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  30. Meg James, Ryan Faughnder (November 10, 2015). "Lionsgate sells 6.8% stake to John Malone's Liberty Global and Discovery". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  31. Gerry Smith (June 30, 2016). "Malone May Have Bigger Plans Beyond Lions Gate Purchase of Starz". Bloomberg. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  32. Michael J. de la Marced (November 10, 2015). "Liberty Global and Discovery Communications Take Stakes in Lions Gate". The New York Times. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  33. Alex Scroxton (February 16, 2016). "Vodafone and Liberty Global to merge in Netherlands". Computer Weekly. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  34. Andrew Trotman, Kate Palmer (February 16, 2016). "Vodafone and Liberty Global announce Dutch tie-up". The Telegraph. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  35. Maarten Van Tartwijk, Simon Zekaria (February 16, 2016). "Liberty Global, Vodafone Hook Up for Multibillion-Dollar Dutch Venture". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  36. Grace Huang, Elco Van Groningen, Kristen Schweizer (February 15, 2016). "Vodafone, Liberty Global Merge Dutch Units to Take On KPN". Bloomberg. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  37. "Vodafone, Liberty Global welcome merger clearance". Advanced Television. August 4, 2016. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  38. "Liberty Global invests in Technetix". Advanced Television. July 5, 2016. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  39. "Liberty Global Ventures invests £7.5m in Technetix". Digital TV Europe. July 5, 2016. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  40. Steve Donohue (September 7, 2012). "Liberty Global deploys Horizon TV platform with Samsung, Intel, NDS technology". Fierce Cable. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  41. Liberty Global outlines Horizon upgrade plans, future vision and lessons
  42. Liberty partners with ActiveVideo for Horizon
  43. Jeff Baumgartner (February 22, 2016). "Liberty Global Ties in Twitter". Multichannel News. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  44. "Liberty Global adds Twitter integration to Horizon platform". Digital TV Europe. February 22, 2016. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  45. "Liberty Global to roll out Horizon TV in Austria". Broadband TV News. February 16, 2016. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  46. "Strategische Beteiligung von upc cablecom an der e-fon AG". e-fon. 1 October 2013.
  47. Betymie Bonnelame (November 21, 2015). "Cable TV giant Liberty Global to buy Cable & Wireless Communications for $8.5 billion". Seychelles News Agency. Retrieved September 9, 2016.

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