John Malone’s Liberty Media sold back their majority share of Barry Diller’s IAC yesterday for $220 million. A longtime business partner (and brief adversary) of Malone’s, Diller explained to The Wrap’s Sharon Waxman that the buy out doesn’t mean bad blood has resurfaced. Rather, IAC is unusually cash-rich, and “Malone’s Liberty ‘would rather invest their cash rather than have us invest their cash.'”
From the sale, Liberty Media walks away with Gifts.com, Evite, and shared ownership of Expedia, Inc., and Diller walks away with 40 percent of IAC in family and personal holdings.
Diller told The Wrap that family control is important to his vision to grow the company:
“What I used to do was create value,” he said. “That’s how we built this business up from $47 million to $15 billion. I want to go back to do that. That’s healthy for the company, and it allows for succession planning.”
He added that Tina Brown’s NewsBeast will probably not be a part of that growth:
“I love Newsweek. I love that we’ve done it. I have great hopes for it. But let’s face it, it’s hardly big money. It’s not a significant investment,” he said.