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Lodgenet Vows To Improve Hotel TV By Expanding Relationship With DirecTV

The changes will begin to take place after private equity firm Colony Capital completes its acquisition of LodgeNet Interactive, part of a pre-packaged Chapter 11 that’s expected to wrap up later this month. At that point DirecTV will participate in what the companies call “an expanded strategic relationship” to improve LodgeNet’s interactive TV and broadband services which go to 1.4M hotel and hospital rooms in the U.S. and Canada. The No. 1 satellite company will provide LodgeNet’s customers with “upgraded products and services” and receive warrants that it can use to buy up to 2.5% of the restructured LodgeNet. The arrangement will provide customers with “a unique financing program to facilitate upgrades to HDTV service at little or no out-of-pocket capital expense.” In addition, LodgeNet plans to offer additional a la carte programming, exclusive content, and DirecTV’s NFL Sunday TicketLodgeNet’s user interface will resemble DirecTV’s, and the satellite company will provide support for operations and customers. Read More »

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Hotel Video Supplier LodgeNet Interactive Files Prepackaged Chapter 11

By | Monday January 28, 2013 @ 6:55am PST

LodgeNet says that hotels, hospitals and other institutions that receive its interactive TV programming and broadband services will continue to do so “without interruption.” It has negotiated a $15M debtor-in-possession financing plan with some of its existing lenders. If the bankruptcy court in New York approves it, then it should “satisfy the customary obligations of LodgeNet’s business during the course of the restructuring process,” the company says. The announcement follows a recent $60M investment by a group led by Colony Capital. The deal was negotiated by former Fox and Gemstar-TV Guide exec Rich Batista, who became LodgeNet’s CEO in September – and left two weeks ago. If all goes as planned, then unsecured creditors will receive full payment in cash at the end of the restructuring. But owners of LodgeNet common stock and Series B Preferred shares are out of luck. The common shares — which traded for more than $35 in early 2007, and more than $4 last April — fell to less than three cents on Friday. LodgeNet has been in the dog house since last spring when it disclosed weaker than expected earnings and withdrew its guidance for the year. Its longtime CEO Scott Petersen resigned in June. Batista’s successors, co-CEOs Frank Elsenbast and James Naro, say that the recapitalization effort ”is advancing on schedule” with help from Colony and “an expanded strategic partnership with DIRECTV.” LodgeNet serves about 1.5M hotel rooms worldwide, reaching 500M travelers a year, along with … Read More »

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