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Deals

August 18, 1995| Times staff and wire services

Television: Tribune Broadcasting Co. has invested $12 million to acquire a 12.5% stake in Time Warner Inc.'s new television network. The investment extends the role of Tribune, an independent group of eight TV stations that has agreed to carry WB Network programming on six of its stations. Under the original affiliate agreement, Tribune agreed to clear the shows for the rights to buy up to 25% of the WB, which had tiny ratings and one prime-time night of programming in its first season. Whereas Chris-Craft Industries, Viacom Inc.'s station-group partner in United Paramount Network, has agreed to shoulder the losses of that struggling new network for its first couple of years, Time Warner is bearing the losses for WB. Time Warner is expected to lose $70 million on it this year, and $300 million or more before it breaks even. Tribune has the right to exercise its option for another 12.5% stake in either January, 1997, or January, 1998.

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* Studios: An Official with Ronald O. Perelman's MacAndrews & Forbes denied that the billionaire has hired financier Michael Milken to advise him about his next move in the entertainment business or that Perelman is pondering a bid for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Reports had Perelman, who has long known Milken, assigning the former investment banker to scout for entertainment investments. Recently, Milken has worked with Rupert Murdoch on deals. James Conroy, senior vice president and special counsel for MacAndrews & Forbes, Perelman's holding company, said Thursday that Perelman "denies any business relationship with Michael Milken and denies that he is considering a bid for MGM." Perelman, whose entertainment assets include New World Communications and Marvel Entertainment Group, also has been rumored to be pondering joining in a bid for CBS, but those rumors have never been substantiated.

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