Viacom Combatants Philippe Dauman and Shari Redstone Headed for Sun Valley Conference

Shari Redstone Viacom Fight
Ryan Stone

UPDATED: Allen & Co.’s annual conference in Sun Valley has long been known as a conclave of business’s biggest names and, occasionally, its biggest deals. But the session coming up early next month in Idaho could also feature one of its biggest showdowns — as this year’s guest list includes both Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman and his bitter rival for control of the company, Shari Redstone.

The two, who have been fighting over the true wishes of Viacom controlling shareholder Sumner Redstone, both made the list for the annual conference in the resort town, which begins July 5.

A newcomer bound to draw plenty of attention this year is the comedian Jerry Seinfeld, who will join Oprah Winfrey and Candice Bergen among the dozens of other magnates, moguls and politicians. From the political world, headliners will include Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and Idaho Gov. C.L. Butch Otter, along with media baron and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan.

The corporate class will have its usual strong contingent, including Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes, Disney CEO Robert Iger, Sony Corp. leader Kazuo Hirai,  Comcast Corp. chief Brian Roberts and Phil Knight of NIKE. Also attending this year will be Tom Staggs, the former Disney COO who had been expected to take over for Iger before he was pushed out in April.

Leaders of entertainment concerns will also be well represented, including Warner Brothers Entertainment CEO Kevin Tsujihara, Sony Entertainment Chief Michael Lynton, Activision Blizzard leader Bobby Kotick and DreamWorks Animation boss Jeffrey Katzenberg .

The list this year also includes a host of other leaders from the field of professional sports — NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, NHL boss Gary Bettman and the owners, respectively, of the New England Patriots and the Boston Red Sox — Robert Kraft and John Henry.

The world of technology will have a large presence: Tim Armstrong of AOL, Jeff Bezos of Amazon, Sergey Brin of Google parent Alphabet Inc., Jack Dorsey of Twitter, Satya Nadella of Microsoft and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, along with his chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg.

Sun Valley regulars who also lead the net worth rankings include Microsoft founder Bill Gates and his wife Melinda, along with Berkshire Hathaway’s Warren Buffett.

The mix for the event is as eclectic as usual, with CAA partner Bryan Lourd joining General Stanley McChrystal, the former U.S. Army commander who is now a consultant and a familiar familial trio — 21st Century Fox magnate Rupert Murdoch and his heirs apparent, sons James and Lachlan.

From the investment world there is Jonathan Nelson of Providence Equity Partners, Albert Wenger of Union Square Ventures, Andrew Warford of Maverick Capital and Casey Wasserman, the businessman who is heading up the city’s effort to lure the 2024 Olympic Games to Los Angeles.

Journalists get only a few spots at the annual session and many of them are columnists or of the emeritus variety — including NBC’s Tom Brokaw, New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, the Washington Post’s David Ignatius, CBS morning host Charlie Rose and financial writer Andrew Ross Sorkin of CNBC and the New York Times.