21, 2000: The Palo Alto Weekly Endorses The Sale of Assets Transaction
May 31, 2000: Co-op Chairman John Kelley Urges Community Support for the Transaction
Dec 31, 1999: Cable Co-op members voted in favor by 80%! Of 6552 votes cast 5222 were in favor versus 1300 opposed
A nonprofit foundation for community media, including continued support of the Mission of MPAC, with expanded community programming, public access, local origination PLUS
Prospectus Table of Contents Frequently asked Questions Summary of the Transaction Steps of the Transaction Reasons for the Transaction YES Vote Recommendation Conditions to the Sale Vote by Mail Only
Board Recommendation to Members Charitable Pledge to Community Programming Silicon Valley Community Communications Background and History of Cable Co-op Financial Condition of Cable Co-op Strategic Alternatives Considered Fairness Opinion on Sale Price: (Text of Fairness Opinion) Financial Data of Cable Co-op Management Discussion and Analysis of Financial Data
Silicon Valley Community Communications is here. Here is the latest vision from the CoPac Committee for the Mid-Peninsula Community Media Center
Here is what supporters and reporters said about the transaction
An Open Letter to the Co-op Community Robert Smith, former Board Member Seth Fearey, Board Member and founder of Connected Communities Andrew Mellows, volunteer community producer Stan Smith, Board Member Roland Finston, Board Member Tom DeMarco, Cable Co-op employee Ken Allen, Board Member and volunteer community producer The Cable Transaction report in the Palo Alto Weekly September 10, 1999 The Boon for Local Programming, Palo Alto Weekly, cover story, August 25, 1999
Community Programming is on the threshold of a new era. It can free itself from the shackles of cables and converters to concentrate on content and community building using emerging technologies. Internet, cable, fiber, wireless: All will now be candidates to carry the community voices. Miracles were performed with volunteers and a shoestring budget to air issues, sports and entertainment. The voiceless were given a voice. Now that the transaction has been approved, there will be a modest income from the legacy of Cable Co-op. It is a start to build on, to teach and to serve the community.
The non-profit Silicon Valley Community Communications foundation, which
receives the proceeds of the sale, is publicly on record as supporting
and funding MPAC, the community access organization and producer of some
of the community programming. SVCC will guarantee a free home and
equipment to MPAC. SVCC has adopted a mission statement endorsed
by both MPAC and Cable Co-op which preserves the mission of MPAC.
But much more can be done with community support beyond that of the cable
member subscribers. Through fundraising and support from the franchisors,
the mission of MPAC and community communications can be enhanced.
SVCC is in the process of transforming into a foundation with a voice from
members of the community. Its ultimate mission will depend on what
you want to make of it.
1) Refinance to keep local control? Been there, done that: The banks weren't interested in the terms Cable Co-op needed. Most simply wanted out.This transaction was about holding onto limited control of channel allocation and rates (for at most brief period) to the detriment of the whole community versus preserving and even improving a variety of services and local production and true access to the benefit of the whole community. That is true local control.
2) Get the City of Palo Alto to partner with local cable. The City of Palo Alto killed that idea when a plan was presented to it. The City was not interested in a major cash outlay or in running a cable system. The interest was in preserving the community access organization.
3) Sell out in a way that stifled competition. The options of a sale to a willing buyer were weighed in against the reality of being a motivated seller. The City wanted a competitive environment for video and telecommunication services. The AT&T offering provided the greatest opporutnity for both comptetitve services and universal system upgrade. The deal was struck.
Cable Co-op has fulfilled its promise.
August 1, 2000