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Rogers Mulls Selling Blue Jays, Stake In Media Company: Report

Toronto Blue Jays designated hitter Kendrys Morales (8) hits a two-run home run against the Boston Red Sox during the fifth inning at Fenway Park.

TORONTO — Rogers Communications Inc. (TSX:RCI.B) is reportedly considering the sale of such assets as baseball’s Toronto Blue Jays and a stake in media company Cogeco Inc. (TSX:CCA) to free up capital for other investments.

But in a speech to the UBS Global Media and Communications conference Tuesday in New York, Rogers chief financial officer Tony Staffieri said no deal is imminent, according to an online report published by Bloomberg.

Rogers has previously indicated it is exploring ways to get more value from its portfolio of assets, including the Jays, but Staffieri’s comments in New York were more specific.

…we think there’s probably better use for that capital.Tony Staffieri, Rogers CFO

He said Rogers still wants rights to sports programming but doesn’t have to own a team to have that, pointing to the company’s 12-year deal with the National Hockey League.

Rogers has been a longtime investor in Cogeco and now holds about a third of the media company and a fifth of its cable unit, Cogeco Communications Inc.

“There were some strategic benefits that we had hoped for with Cogeco and those seem to be further and further away,” Staffieri told the conference.

“As we think about an environment where interest rates start to go up and compare it to the yield that we’re getting on the asset today, we think there’s probably better use for that capital.”

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