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Negotiations between Disney and GE about a possible sale of NBC "have stalled." Industry sources confirmed reports that Disney is considering a $5B bid for NBC. Disney is said to be discussing a bid of $3.5B in cash and $1.5B in a promissory note. "But the negotiations with GE are said to have been affected by disagreement over valuation of the note" (N.Y. POST, 9/15). Also interested in NBC: ITT and Time Warner. One NBC source said yesterday that an "outright sale of the network" was unlikely given the improving prospects and the network TV business in general. NBC is interested in a "partnership arrangement whereby it would link up with a major producer" of programs (Paul Farhi, WASHINGTON POST, 9/15). OTHER SUITORS: In New York, Robin Schatz notes other names "pop up every day for potential buyers of a broadcast TV network." Among them: Ted Turner, Harcourt General, Chris Craft Industries and Viacom (NEWSDAY, 9/15). CNN's Lou Dobbs: "The baseball season may be over, but a brand new game has riveted the attention of Wall Street. The goal, to buy a broadcast network. The players, just about every major media company you can think of" ("Moneyline," 9/14).
The Golf Channel is targeting Jan. 17 for its debut telecast. The Golf Channel, based in Orlando and founded by cable TV exec. Joseph Gibbs and Arnold Palmer, will be the only 24 hour television network dedicated to golf (Steve Pike, GOLF WEEK, 9/17)....SportsChannel New England and the Celtics have agreed in principle to a multi-year agreement to continue airing Celtisc home games beginning with this season (THE DAILY, 9/15).