After nearly a year of negotiations, bondholders in cable firm Telewest have finally consented to a massive debt-for-equity restructuring.

The cable group – US-owned but with most of its operations in the UK – has agreed “in principle” the terms of the deal, which will see around £3.5 billion ($5.6bn; €5.0bn) of debt wiped out in return for a 98.5% stake in the company. Existing shareholders will retain the remaining 1.5%.

The news sparked speculation that once the deal is complete Telewest will shift its primary stock market listing to New York – possibly to facilitate a merger with rival cable firm NTL.

However, Telewest’s restructuring is yet to gain the approval of the firm’s banks, to which it owes around £2bn. Winning them over is expected to take several more months.

Data sourced from: multiple sources; additional content by WARC staff