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Kent to take reins of Classic Communications

Tue, 02/11/2003 - 7:00pm
Jeff Baumgartner

Cequel III, an investment firm headed up by cable vet Jerry Kent, has made an investment in Classic Communications and will assume management of the MSO, the 12th-largest in the U.S.

Tied to the deal, Cequel said it will relocate Classic's headquarters from Tyler, Texas, to St. Louis, Mo. Kent will serve as Classic's president and CEO. Dale Bennett, who helped guide Classic out of bankruptcy, will remain an "integral part" of the Classic and Cequel III team, the companies said, noting that "select" members of Bennett's management team will also play roles in the new company, but was not more specific.

For Kent, the deal marks his return to the cable business. He most recently was the president and CEO of Charter Communications.

"We're back in the cable business, building for the future," Kent said, in a statement. "Classic is a platform company we expect to grow into a major U.S. cable operator."

Classic presently has about 325,000 cable subs in 10 states: Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Colorado and Ohio.

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