Media news/analysis in brief - (April 7, 2005)

by: David Strahlberg

Companies mentioned below:

  • Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia (ticker: MSO)
  • Tivo Inc. (ticker: TIVO)
  • International Business Machines (ticker: IBM)
  • News Corp. (ticker: NWS)
  • Disney (ticker: DIS)
  • Viacom (ticker: VIAB)
  • Image Entertainment (ticker: DISK)

  • Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia named Sally Preston Senior VP/Publisher of Martha Stewart Living magazine. Preston previously was VP/Publisher of Rodale's
    Organic Style magazine.  She has alos held positions at O, The Oprah Magazine and Better Homes and
    Gardens. Preston will oversee all advertising sales and marketing efforts for
    the magazine. Quick comment: Preston replaces Suzane Sobel who resigned a few days before Martha Stewart's return from prison.
  • Tivo Inc. announced that it has purchased six patents from IBM (ticker: IBM) related to audience research and measurement,
    integration of television signals with internet access, automatic rescheduling
    of recordings, content screening, enhanced program information search, and
    electronic program guide interface enhancements.
  • News Corp.'s Fox News unit is reportedly uncertain as to whether it will launch a business news channel later this year.  In January, News Corp.'s COO, Peter Chernin, stated that the company was planning to roll out a business news channel in the second half of 2005 to 20 million viewers.
  • Disney (DIS) hired Rob Weisbach to head its Miramax Books unit.  Previously, Weisbach was an editor at Viacom's Simon & Schuster unit.  Quick comment: DIS and Miramax co-founders Bob and Harvey Weinstein recently parted ways, but the Weinstein's will continue to manage the Miramax Books unit through September 30, 2007.
  • Image Entertainment (ticker: DISK) has appointed Gary Haber to its board.  Haber is a principal of Haber
    Corporation Certified Public Accountants, whose practice is focused on financial management within the music and entertainment
    industry. Haber Corp.'s clients include: Evanescence, Joe Cocker, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Peter Frampton, Randy Travis
    and Ryan Adams.