You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Crafting an empire

CBS sets vote on merger, includes KW holders

CBS Corp. Friday set a new, Nov. 17 date for a special shareholder meeting to approve its merger with Viacom in order to include holders of King World Prods., who will vote Nov. 15 on that company’s sale to CBS. King World had originally scheduled a vote on its merger for Sept. 7 but postponed the meeting to digest info on the larger CBS/Viacom deal.

The three companies will form a media and entertainment powerhouse, and rumors continue to circulate that the trio could be joined by Chris-Craft, owner of 10 TV stations and Viacom’s 50% partner in the UPN weblet. Insiders insist no deal is imminent — most certainly not before the various scheduled shareholder meetings.

Chris-Craft has been in discussions with a number of big media companies interested in expanding their broadcast holdings, especially since government regulators ruled in August to allow duopoly — owning two TV stations in one market — under certain conditions.

Execs at News Corp. recently stated flat out that Fox isn’t currently in talks with Chris-Craft, and Disney’s Michael Eisner said last week he plans to avoid high-priced broadcasting acquisitions.

That would most definitely describe any takeover of Chris-Craft. In fact, some reports say CBS may have offered $85 a share for the company–nearly $10 above its current price. Thanks to months of takeover speculation, it’s more than double where the stock was trading last spring, when it hit a 52-week low of about $40 a share.

A combined CBS/Viacom would already be over the 35% national coverage cap imposed on broadcasters. Viacom chief Sumner Redstone and CBS CEO Mel Karmazin said Thursday they don’t expect the FCC to loosen the 35% rule before their deal closes. But they believe they can shrink their combined 38% footprint by swapping stations to create duopolies.

They also said they are optimistic about being able to retain UPN, despite the current prohibition against owning more than one broadcast network. Many Wall Streeters have said they expect the FCC, which wants UPN to survive, to grant a waiver to that rule.

More Biz

  • IWC Schaffhausen store opening, Rodeo Drive,

    8 Luxury Gifts That Industry Leaders Are Spending Their Paychecks On

    Whether you’re celebrating a new launch, a new business venture, or toasting to the end of another successful year, here are eight gift ideas to reward yourself — and to impress the company you keep. 1. Saint Laurent Perforated Leather Tote Bag If you work in the industry, you need a good bag, and you’ve [...]

  • best airlines ranked inflight entertainment

    Holiday Travel Survey Reveals Airlines With Best In-Flight Entertainment

    There are many ways to pass the time if you’re in the air, but for most people, settling in with a glass of wine and a movie is the preferred way to fly. But not all airlines share the same script when it comes to entertainment offerings. A new survey from the website, CableTV.com, ranked [...]

  • Ventana Sur Rocks with Sales, Mass

    Ventana Sur Rocks with Sales, Mass Attendance, Structural Growth

    BUENOS AIRES — Celebrating its 10th anniversary with a huge hike in attendance to over 4,000 accredited delegates, the 2018 Ventana Sur will go down in history on multiple counts: Sales and pick-ups on movies which combined social comment and entertainment value, increasingly the new foreign-language movie standard; new sections, led by a Proyecta co-production [...]

  • Jennifer Lawrence Harvey Weinstein

    Jennifer Lawrence Denies Harvey Weinstein's Claim in Latest Assault Lawsuit

    Harvey Weinstein was hit with a lawsuit Friday from an actress who claims he forcibly performed oral sex on her, repeatedly masturbated in front of her, and threatened to harm her career if she objected. The suit details that Weinstein claimed he was trying to help her and that he was the gateway to her dreams. [...]

  • Times Up Hollywood

    Time's Up Entertainment Announces New Industry Mentoring Initiative

    Time’s Up Entertainment, an affiliate of the Time’s Up coalition of women across industries working to improve workplace safety, has announced the “Who’s in the Room” industry mentoring initiative. The program’s goal is to increase the presence of people of color from diverse backgrounds in the entertainment industry’s executive ranks. Funded by a $500,000 grant from [...]

  • Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt in

    Paramount Inks Deal for Theme Park in South Korea

    Paramount Pictures has announced a deal to install a studio-branded theme park in an entertainment resort being developed in South Korea. The agreement was struck between Paramount and Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment, which owns the Inspire Integrated Entertainment Resort in the South Korean city of Incheon. Mohegan has invested KRW 2.8 trillion ($2.4 billion) in [...]

  • Davan Maharaj Mel Gibson

    L.A. Times Publisher's Lawyer Was Accused of Extorting Mel Gibson

    The attorney who negotiated a $2.5 million exit package for L.A. Times publisher Davan Maharaj was previously accused of using secret recordings to extort actor Mel Gibson. Surreptitious recordings also figure in the Maharaj case. NPR reported on Wednesday that Maharaj taped Tronc chairman Michael Ferro. According to the report, Ferro was heard on the [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content