SBD/16/Sports Media

DISNEY'S TV HEAD CONFIRMS COMPANY IS IN A BUYING MOOD

     Walt Disney Co.'s new head of television, Dennis Hightower,
says the company will continue to look at acquiring a TV network:
"We're obviously still evolving our strategic objectives in that
regard.  I'll say it is still on the slate" (REUTERS/COWLES
BUSINESS MEDIA, 3/15).  Despite Hightower's statement, Disney CEO
Michael Eisner refused to comment on the rumors that Disney and
former QVC Chair Barry Diller were teaming up to buy CBS.  Eisner
was in New York unveiling the Disney Institute -- a planned
educational resort in FL (Jonathan Auerbach, N.Y. POST, 3/16).
CNBC's "Business Insiders" noted takeover talk has led to a "run-
up" in CBS' stock this week.  On the show, there was a panel
discussion concerning the takeover rumors.  Among the panelists:
HOLLYWOOD REPORTER's Stephen Battaglio, USA TODAY's David
Lieberman, media analyst Porter Bibb, and economics columnist
Kathleen Hays.  Bibb on the rumors that CBS Chair Laurence Tisch
might be more "disposed" to sell to Disney rather than Ted
Turner:  "Larry Tish is more disposed to sell to the highest
bidder, and Disney can buy CBS anytime they want.  CBS is now at
68 1/4, it topped $70 a share, getting close to the $80 asking
price that Larry Tisch wants for CBS.  I don't see Disney paying
that price.  Ted Turner on the other hand, really has to buy a
network, whether it's CBS or NBC."  If he doesn't get a network,
Bibb said Turner would stay "forever relegated to the second tier
in the media business" (CNBC, 3/15).
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Related Topics:

CBS, NBC, Media, Viacom, Walt Disney

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