SEC Probing Cablevision's Voom Deals

Cablevision Systems Corp. (CVC) on Thursday said the Securities and Exchange Commission is conducting an informal inquiry into its deals to unwind a money-draining satellite television service Voom (search).

Cablevision shares fell 4 percent on the news.

The cable operator, in a regulatory filing, said the SEC (search) has requested information related to disclosures the company made on Dec. 21, 2004, and Jan. 20, 2005, about the suspension of a planned spin-off of Rainbow Media Enterprises and the agreement to sell part of its satellite assets to EchoStar Communications Corp. (DISH).

Cablevision also said it now plans to give its chairman, Charles Dolan (search), who is attempting to buy the remaining Voom assets not sold to EchoStar, until March 7 to present a deal to the board.

The company said it was notified of the inquiry on Monday. The SEC has requested information for the period Nov. 1, 2004, through Jan. 20, 2005, Cablevision said.

Voom HD LLC was launched recently by Dolan, the chairman and company founder, and his son Tom to buy the Cablevision remaining satellite assets that are not being purchased by EchoStar.

On Monday, Cablevision said it would shut down the Voom satellite TV service because it had failed to reach a final agreement with Charles Dolan on a sale.

Shares of Cablevision fell $1.29 to $28.95 in morning trade on the New York Stock Exchange.

In addition to the satellite assets, Rainbow Media's assets include cable channels American Movie Classics and The Independent Film Channel, a variety of on-demand programming services, and motion picture production and distribution businesses.