Annual report pursuant to Section 13 and 15(d)

Commitments And Contingencies

Commitments And Contingencies
12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2016
Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]  
Commitments and Contingencies

(18)  Commitments and Contingencies

Operating Leases

Liberty leases business offices, has entered into satellite transponder lease agreements and uses certain equipment under lease arrangements. Rental expense under such arrangements amounted to $46 million, $39 million and $47 million for the years ended December 31, 2016, 2015 and 2014, respectively.

A summary of future minimum lease payments under noncancelable operating leases and build to suit leases as of December 31, 2016 follows (amounts in millions):







Years ending December 31:





























It is expected that in the normal course of business, leases that expire generally will be renewed or replaced by leases on other properties; thus, it is anticipated that future lease commitments will not be less than the amount shown for 2016.


Distribution Center Lease

On July 2, 2015, QVC entered into a lease (the “Lease”) for a west coast distribution center. Pursuant to the Lease, the landlord built an approximately one million square foot rental building in Ontario, California (the “Premises”), and thereafter leased the Premises to QVC as its new California distribution center for an initial term of 15 years. Under the Lease, QVC is required to pay an initial base rent of approximately $6 million per year, increasing to approximately $8 million per year by the final year of the initial term, as well as all real estate taxes and other building operating costs. QVC also has an option to extend the term of the Lease for up to two consecutive terms of 10 years each.

QVC has the right to purchase the Premises and related land from the landlord by entering into an amended and restated agreement at any time during the twenty-fifth or twenty-sixth months of the Lease's initial term with a $10 million initial payment and annual payments of $12 million over a term of 13 years.

QVC concluded that it was the deemed owner (for accounting purposes only) of the Premises during the construction period under build to suit lease accounting. Building construction began in July of 2015. During the construction period, QVC recorded estimated project construction costs incurred by the landlord as a projects in progress asset and a corresponding long-term liability in “Property and equipment, net” and “Other long-term liabilities,” respectively. In addition, QVC paid for normal tenant improvements and certain structural improvements and recorded these amounts as part of the projects in progress asset. Upon completion of construction, the long-term liability was reclassified to debt. As of December 31, 2016, the liability related to the California distribution center was approximately $105 million.

On August 29, 2016, QVC’s California distribution center officially opened. QVC concluded that the Lease does not meet the criteria for “sale-leaseback” treatment under U.S. GAAP. Therefore, QVC treats the Lease as a financing obligation and lease payments are attributed to: (1) a reduction of the principal financing obligation; (2) imputed interest expense; and (3) land lease expense representing an imputed cost to lease the underlying land of the Premises. In addition, the building asset will be depreciated over its estimated useful life of 20 years. Although QVC did not begin making monthly lease payments pursuant to the Lease until February 2017, the portion of the lease obligations allocated to the land has been treated for accounting purposes as an operating lease that commenced in 2015. If QVC does not exercise its right to purchase the Premises and related land, QVC will derecognize both the net book values of the asset and the financing obligation at the conclusion of the lease term.


Liberty has contingent liabilities related to legal and tax proceedings and other matters arising in the ordinary course of business. Although it is reasonably possible Liberty may incur losses upon conclusion of such matters, an estimate of any loss or range of loss cannot be made. In the opinion of management, it is expected that amounts, if any, which may be required to satisfy such contingencies will not be material in relation to the accompanying consolidated financial statements.