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Thursday, April 17, 2014



Barry Diller Executive Suite - H 2014


"When Barry Diller left Fox in 1992, he had launched a TV network and been chairman of Paramount Pictures -- a run that would have been enviable on its own. But he was just getting started: The combative, curious executive began a journey that would include running the home-shopping channel QVC, attempts to buy Paramount and CBS, the purchase and sale of USA Networks and a brief partnership with Vivendi when it owned Universal. Ultimately, Diller transformed his digital commerce and media holdings into IAC/InterActiveCorp: With revenue of $3 billion in 2013, an 8 percent increase from 2012 (Forbes estimates his net worth at $2.4 billion), his empire includes the production company Electus, search engines like About.com, the fast-rising VOD company Vimeo, the dating app Tinder and The Daily Beast. Through it all, the outspoken and mercurial Diller, who married designer Diane von Furstenberg, his close friend, in 2001 -- his stepson, Alexander von Furstenberg, 44, is on IAC's board of directors -- never has lost his appetite for disrupting the status quo. On April 22, the Supreme Court is expected to take up American Broadcasting Companies v. Aereo, a case that could alter the television landscape profoundly. Aereo, a startup in which IAC led a $20.5 million investment in 2012, captures broadcast TV transmissions via tiny antennas then relays the programming to subscribers' digital devices. Broadcasters say Aereo merely is a technologically sophisticated way to violate copyright laws. They also see it as a significant threat to an increasingly important revenue stream: the billions in retransmission fees they receive from cable and satellite providers to carry their content. Diller, 72, met with THR in late March in his suite of executive offices on the sixth floor of IAC's gleaming, Frank Gehry-designed headquarters in New York's Chelsea. Its undulating form resembles a giant sailing vessel -- appropriate given he owns the Eos, a three-masted Bermuda-rigged schooner that reportedly is the world's largest private yacht. Diller revealed whether he thinks Aereo will survive ('50-50') and who in Hollywood really understands the Internet (hint: practically no one)." (THR)






"Over the past 40 years, there have been many ways to leave the U.S. House of Representatives. Specifically, nine different methods. The main ones, beyond losing a primary or general election, are to retire or run for another office. But a member can also do one of the following: be appointed to another office, resign, be expelled, pass away or, in the rarest of instances, have the House vacate one’s seat. So far, 50 members of the 113th Congress have either left office or signaled their intentions to leave at the end of this cycle. The manner in which they have left or plan to leave the House varies. Two already found paths to the U.S. Senate: Then-Rep. Tim Scott (R-SC) was appointed to the upper chamber and then-Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA) won a special election to replace Secretary of State John Kerry. Another 17 are in the midst of running for other offices that will preclude them from running for the House again — 13 are running for the Senate (or ran, in Republican Rep. Steve Stockman’s case), two are running for governor, one is seeking a lieutenant governorship and another is hoping to become a county supervisor. Most of those exiting the House (24) will do so by retiring at the end of the term, while six have already beat them to the punch by resigning. Lastly, the late Rep. Bill Young (R) died, necessitating the hotly-contested special election in March to fill his Florida seat. Despite all that, the degree of turnover in the House this cycle is not unusually high. Over the last 40 years, an average of 70.4 members has exited the House for one reason or another each two-year cycle. That’s about one-sixth of the total House membership every cycle. At 50 exits so far, this Congress still has a ways to go in order to produce even an average level of turnover. Of course, there might still be additional retirements or resignations, and some incumbents will lose primary and general election contests. However, while this cycle’s total will go up, it remains to be seen whether or not it will reach or surpass the average number of departures." (CenterforPolitics)





"It was Wednesday. Where else? Michael’s. The Wednesdays customers are always in the mood to know who’s in the room; who’s breaking bread by their side. Public relations, media, authors, agents, bankers, corporate executives, editors and Wendi Deng Murdoch who is at the top of the 'talk-about' list because of her marriage break-up with a man named Rupert. Mrs. Deng Murdoch was lunching with Erik Gordon and Fisher Stevens, the actor, director, producer who won an Oscar four years ago for his documentary feature. Also in the room, Vanity Fair writer Amy Fine Collins with Debra Spar, president of Barnard College; Bernard Gershon, Senior VP Disney; Steve Solomon of Rubenstein Associates (public relations), Jim Abernathy (vip public relations); more PR: Lisa Dallos of HL Group; Audrey Gruss (founder of Hope for  Depression) with Jay McInerney; Michael Gross, who is busy right now publicizing his new book 'House of Outrageous Fortune' about 15 Central Park West, the building where retired banker Sanford Weill sold his penthouse apartment to the young daughter of a Russian oligarch for $88 million. Moving around the room: Glenn Horowitz, the rare book seller, an occupation which is much more than meets the eye, as you will learn here; producer Beverly Camhe; mega-entertainment lawyer Allen Grubman; Scott Marden (Compass Partners); Martin Puris; Henry Schleiff with Steven Schipopa (from The Sopranos); Lisa Linden and Julie Menin, the Manhattan Community leader who ran for Borough President (juliemenin.com); Gus Oliver with Frank Biondi, media and film executive (Viacom, Universal Studios); Marty Pompadur, former President of News Corporation (Murdoch); media executive Peter Price; former Redbook publisher Tony Hoyt .." (NYSD)





"It looked like a flash mob. Right after lunch on the first warm afternoon in April, seniors began streaming out of the city’s elite private schools. They came East from Spence and Nightingale and Sacred Heart, West from Chapin and Brearley. They met at 86th Street and Park Avenue. Then the Dalton crew arrived, and there were several hundred kids milling around. They were the sons and daughters of the very rich in their final weeks of school. They’d just returned from Spring Break in St. Barts and Harbour Island and Palm Beach; in September, they’d be off to Duke and Brown and Harvard. They were tanned and buffed, glowing with good health and good fortune, and when they came together, they looked like a Ralph Lauren double-page foldout in Vogue. The first sign that this might be something more than a flash mob was the arrival of a convoy. A Range Rover. A Suburban. A Denali. All black. These were the cars of the wives of three Wall Street titans who were, as it happened, friends having their monthly lunch at Swifty’s. Their kids knew their mothers would be drinking Sancerre until at least 2:30, plenty of time for them to borrow their chauffeurs for a grocery pickup at the D’Agostino on Madison Avenue. They just hadn’t told the drivers that they’d be picking up $6,000 worth of canned food. Bought online. Paid by Platinum cards. Yes, a huge purchase. But considering who the customers were, it was more like a rounding error. Real money would be more like Kate Nichols — daughter of Billy Nichols, head of equities at Morgan Stanley — getting a $2 million apartment as a pre-graduation present for getting through Spence." (Observer)

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