Cable Guy: John Malone: Wiring Europe

John Malone has been American cable's smartest operator and toughest dealmaker. But he's finding it hard to translate his success overseas

Monopolist. Bully. Cowboy. John Malone has heard it all before. As he dominated the U.S. cable-TV industry for much of the past three decades, the CEO of Denver-based TeleCommunications Inc. (TCI) was called plenty of names, including some that can't be printed here.

Skeptics said he was naive to think that Americans would shell out $10 to $20 a month for extra channels when they were happy with the ones they pulled in with rabbit ears. And when Malone ended up controlling more than 10 million cable subscribers and a stake in nearly every major cable network, from CNN and...

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