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MEGA-MEDIA PLAYERS: DISNEY, TURNER, TCI
Published August 16, 1995
OVITZ FALLOUT, DAY 2: The hiring of Michael Ovitz by Disney away from Hollywood powerhouse, Creative Artists Agency, still has Hollywood "reeling," according to the L.A. TIMES. Combined with Disney's $19B purchase agreement with Capital Cities/ABC, the news is "expected to prod other media giants, such as Viacom Inc., Sony Corp. and MCA, to examine whether they are being left on the sidelines" (Bates & Eller, L.A. TIMES, 8/16). One producer from a rival company compared the scene to the "first stage of the recreation of the universe." Alan Bell, President of the Broadcast Division of Freedom Newspapers, warned against ending up with "three companies and four CEOs in the entertainment industry" (Adam Pertman, BOSTON GLOBE, 8/16). THAT'S A NICE MOUSE, HERE BOY: Disney may sell as much as $5B in bonds to fund the Cap Cities acquisition. Analyst Carol Levenson: "If anyone can sell a $5 billion bond deal, it will be Disney" (DOW JONES NEWS SERVICE, 8/16). SATELLITE BIZ BOOMING: TCI, the U.S.'s largest cable systems operator, said yesterday that its Primestar direct satellite TV service was adding 10,000 customers weekly and should have cash flow at a rate of $80M a year by the middle of '96. TCI finance exec Bernard Schotters said Primestar's customer base, which totaled about 230,000 on June 30, should hit 500,000 by year's end. Primestar is past the break-even point (REUTERS/DAILY VARIETY, 8/16). GOTTA BUY SOMETHING: Turner Broadcasting is "seriously considering" a bid for Samuel Goldwyn Co., an independent film maker (Charles Haddad, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 8/16).