February 8, 1998 |
The pen was mightier than the word when late-night television crossed the final shopping frontier early Saturday. Two Russian cosmonauts aboard the Mir space station, appearing live on the QVC shopping channel, set out to hawk the American-made $32.75 Fisher Space Pen, used on NASA spaceflights since 1967 because it can write in the absence of gravity.
January 21, 1998 |
Barry Diller received another big stock-option package from the media company he runs, as HSN Inc. granted him the right to acquire 4.75 million common shares through 2007. The package will generate about $292 million in profit for Diller if HSN shares appreciate 10% annually during the 10-year period, according to a proxy statement recently filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These figures assume Diller holds all of the options until 2007.
November 20, 1997 |
Lowell "Bud" Paxson, who made a name for himself as the co-founder of the Home Shopping Network, said Wednesday that he is trying to build a seventh national broadcast network that will target women with a slate of wholesome family programming. Paxson said that by the end of August 1998, his more than 70 UHF television stations will shift their emphasis from infomercials to network reruns of such shows as CBS' "Touched by an Angel" and "Dr Quinn: Medicine Woman."
November 4, 1997 |
Barry Diller's surprise deal to control most of Universal Studios' television business continues to be a provocative topic in Hollywood. The decision by Seagram chief Edgar Bronfman Jr. to sell Universal's USA Network, Sci-Fi Network and its domestic TV production and distribution business to Diller's HSN Inc. in a deal valued at $4.1 billion is widely viewed as a smart, if highly perplexing, move.
November 1, 1997 |
Ticketmaster Group Inc. said it appointed a committee of two outside directors to consider an offer by HSN Inc. to buy the half of the company HSN doesn't own for $307.5 million in cash. The committee named to evaluate the $25-a-share offer will consist of Jonathan Dolgen, who also is an executive with Viacom Inc.'s Paramount Pictures studio, and Peter Barton, the former head of Tele-Communications Inc.'s Liberty Media Group. They will retain financial and legal advisors, the company said.
October 24, 1997 |
On the heels of Monday's announcement that it planned to buy most of Universal Studios' television operations for $4.08 billion, HSN on Thursday announced an offer to buy the half of Ticketmaster it doesn't already own, for $307.5 million in cash. Ticketmaster Chief Executive Fred Rosen said he expects Ticketmaster's board to meet next week to appoint an independent committee to review the proposal.
October 21, 1997 |
Hollywood giant Universal Studios announced Monday that it is selling its major television assets to a company controlled by entertainment mogul Barry Diller, creating a novel alliance that would use both cable and broadcast television as a backbone for a new national network. The transaction, valued at $4.1 billion, is the boldest initiative yet in the remolding of Universal since it was purchased in 1995 by Seagram Co., the Canadian beverage and spirits giant.
October 21, 1997 |
The HSN-Universal Studios transaction announced by Barry Diller and Edgar Bronfman Jr. involves several other major industry figures. John Malone, 56, chairman of Tele-Communications Inc. Liberty Media, TCI's wholly owned programming arm, is one of the Home Shopping Network's largest shareholders. Liberty would own 15% of the newly formed operation and would have the option to increase that stake to 25%. Malone heads Colorado-based TCI, the United States' largest cable television operator.