Cablevision announced on Thursday that its board of directors has given the OK to explore a possible spin-off of Rainbow Media Holdings, which includes AMC, WE tv, IFC the Sundance Channel, Wedding Central and IFC Entertainment -- its independent film business that houses IFC Films, IFC Productions and the IFC Film Center.
The businesses that would remain a part of Cablevision under the spin-off plan include its eponymous cable business, Long Island’s Newsday newspaper, News 12 Networks, MSG Varsity and Clearview Cinemas.
Cablevision is targeting mid-2011 for completion of the proposed spin-off.
“Cablevision is confident of the strength of the Rainbow business, which houses an attractive portfolio of programming assets,” the company said in a release, “and believes that the spin-off has the potential to enhance the value of that business and Cablevision.”
The company’s stock price jumped more than 10 percent during morning trading on the news.
No guarantee that a spin-off will happen, but Cablevision’s board has asked the IRS whether or not the transaction would be tax-free -- a sign that they are indeed serious about it.