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Dec. 17, 2015, 1:29 PM
- QVC (QVCA -1.5%) has tapped Mike Fitzharris to lead QVC Japan, replacing John Thomas.
- Fitzharris had been COO of QVC UK after rejoining the company in 2012. He'll be CEO and representative director at QVC Japan, which posted $192M in revenue in Liberty Interactive's last earnings report, third most among geographies.
- Thomas will remain chairman of the board of the operation, and will also be vice chairman of CNR Mall, a joint venture between QVC and China National Radio.
- Previously: QVC names Bertoni new chief of China venture (Nov. 18 2015)
- Previously: Liberty Interactive beats, though strong dollar dampens QVC globally (Nov. 04 2015)
Nov. 18, 2015, 11:00 AM
- QVC (NASDAQ:QVCA) has made a couple of global leadership changes.
- The company has named Gregg Bertoni its CEO of CNR Mall, a joint venture between QVC and China National Radio. Bertoni is replacing James Clarke, who's led the JV since it was formed in 2012.
- Bertoni has been chief of QVC Italy, his latest role in a 20-year career with the company.
- The company also promoted Paolo Penati to replace Bertoni in running its QVC Italy operation. Penati has been CFO and VP of merchandising, planning and programming for the Italian unit after joining it in 2010.
Nov. 12, 2015, 10:08 AM
- On a heavy reorg day for Liberty stocks, with Liberty Media recapitalizing its stock groups, Liberty Interactive/Liberty Ventures (QVCA -0.8%, LVNTA +1.5%) is set to pursue two spin-offs: CommerceHub, and Liberty Expedia Holdings.
- CommerceHub would consist of that integration services company -- easy -- while Expedia Holdings would encapsulate Liberty Interactive's ownership in Expedia as well as Bodybuilding.com.
- The company expects the CommerceHub A and B shares to trade as CHUBA and CHUBB, while the Expedia Holdings shares would trade as LEXEA and LEXEB on Nasdaq.
- The tax-free moves would leave Liberty Ventures Group with businesses not in the QVC Group, including Evite, LMC Right Start, the interests in FTD, Lending Tree, Interval Leisure, Time Warner and Time Warner Cable along with other securities.
Nov. 9, 2015, 8:05 PM
- With the review of Charter Communications' (NASDAQ:CHTR) buyout of Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) proceeding apace at the FCC, the agency is sending requests tied to cable mogul John Malone's holdings not only in Charter but in content companies like Discovery (NASDAQ:DISCA) and Starz (NASDAQ:STRZA), which supply Charter rivals.
- The agency has sent letters to the companies that list Malone as their chairman -- Liberty Media (NASDAQ:LMCA), Liberty Interactive (NASDAQ:QVCA) and Liberty Broadband (NASDAQ:LBRDA), which holds 26% of Charter -- and asked about Malone's influence over those entities as well as the content creators and DirecTV.
- It's a "pretty meaningful request," says BTIG's Rich Greenfield, while Craig Moffett points at the Comcast deal for NBCUniversal in saying that Malone's tangled ownership is "probably not a big issue."
- Malone has a 46.6% voting interest in Liberty Broadband, which would be entitled to vote no more than 25.01% of shares in the new combination, Charter has said. His interests in Discovery and Starz are "minority interests" where he wouldn't control day-to-day decisions.
- The American Cable Association (representing smaller providers) argues that Malone's interests aren't insubstantial and that consumers can expect higher rates unless the FCC imposes conditions on the deal.
- Previously: BTIG: Are TWC, Charter too strong separately to sell merger case? (Nov. 02 2015)
- Previously: Charter call: Talking wireless ambitions, slamming password sharing (Oct. 29 2015)
Nov. 4, 2015, 7:01 PM
- Liberty Interactive (QVCA -3.1%) logged profits and revenue that beat expectations in Q3 despite a near-8% drop in revenues.
- Revenue at its biggest division, QVC Group, fell 1% overall, again affected by a strong dollar.
- QVC Group revenue breakouts: U.S., $1.42B (up 4%); Germany, $199M (down 13%); Japan, $192M (down 11%); UK, $168M (down 3%); Italy, $28M (down 18%).
- Adjusted OIBDA at QVC fell 2% to $430M; eCommerce revenue was up 10% to $861M and grew to 43% of consolidated revenue; mobile orders were 53% of total eCommerce, up from a year-ago 43%.
- In the Liberty Ventures Group, revenue for continuing digital commerce (Bodybuilding.com, CommerceHub, Evite, Right Start) grew 4% to $146M, mainly due to CommerceHub.
- Shares were flat in after-hours action.
Nov. 4, 2015, 4:37 PM
- Liberty Interactive (NASDAQ:QVCA): Q3 Net income of $154M
- Revenue of $2.15B (-7.7% Y/Y) beats by $150M.
Oct. 2, 2015, 5:24 PM
- With Liberty Interactive's (QVCA +1.7%) completed deal for Zulily (NASDAQ:ZU), Brean Capital reiterated its Buy rating based on new competitive strength.
- The firm has a price target of $37 on QVCA; 37.8% upside from today's close of $26.86.
- "We view QVC and Zulily as two companies able to compete against Amazon.com for the long term by offering consumers differentiated merchandise," says the firm's Tom Forte.
- "In our view, applying QVC’s best practices to Zulily should assist in that company’s efforts to reignite customer growth. Lastly, we consider the potential for QVC to attract Zulily’s younger customers as a potential added benefit from the transaction and not a necessity for the deal to be considered a success."
- Zulily will continue to be identified by a separate brand for events both online and on the QVC network.
- Previously: Liberty Interactive completes $2.4B Zulily acquisition (Oct. 01 2015)
Oct. 1, 2015, 3:25 PM
- Liberty Interactive (QVCA +0.5%, LVNTA +1.2%) has acquired all the remaining shares of Zulily (NASDAQ:ZU), wrapping its $2.4B deal.
- The deal was completed through a second-step merger of Liberty's Mocha Merger Sub unit into Zulily. Shares of QVCA and cash have been delivered and Zulily's no longer trading.
- Liberty plans to maintain separate brands for QVC and Zulily, and has pointed toward Zulily-branded sales events both on the air and online.
Sep. 15, 2015, 4:11 PM
- The Justice Dept. and FTC have given an early OK to their antitrust review of Liberty Interactive's (NASDAQ:QVCA) $2.4B deal to buy Zulily (NASDAQ:ZU).
- The move, which means the government saw there was no reason to block the deal or impose conditions, clears the way for a Q4 closing. Both boards approved the deal.
- Liberty has said that it will maintain separate brands for QVC and Zulily, which means Zulily-branded on-air and online sales events. Zulily's senior management, including CEO Darrell Cavens, will continue to run that operation, while Zulily Chairman Mark Vadon gets a seat on the Liberty Interactive board.
- After hours: ZU +0.2%; QVCA -0.5%.
Aug. 17, 2015, 8:06 AM
- Liberty Interactive (NASDAQ:LVNTA), (NASDAQ:QVCA) agrees to buy zulily (NASDAQ:ZU) for $18.75 per share - $9.375 in cash and 0.3098 newly issued shares of QVCA. The deal is expected to close in Q4.
- A conference call to discuss the merger is set for 9 ET
- Zulily closed Friday at $12.57.
- Previously: Zulily halted with news pending (Aug. 17)
Aug. 6, 2015, 1:01 PM
- Disney (NYSE:DIS) is down another 5.2% today (down 13.7% in two days) amid a deepening media stock sell-off that it seems to have spurred with its Tuesday earnings report, where it took a fair chunk of time on an analyst call acknowledging subscriber losses at ESPN.
- Also off broadly at midday: CBS -3.1%; CMCSA -4%; FOXA -9.8%; VIAB -15.6%; TWX -5%; AMCX -9.6%; LGF -6.7%.
- The sell-off is affecting several companies with a cable or pay-TV component, as sub losses at ESPN -- the most valuable part of any cable bundle -- point to the effect of cord-cutting.
- Analysts are agreeing that the trend of unbundling (or skinny bundling) might threaten the long-term health of the pay TV ecosystem, which has profited from the promise of rising subscription fees from providers. That's dependent on subscriber counts that don't significantly drop off.
- A growing pile of reports this week is indicating warning signs for subscriber counts. Dish Network (DISH -2.2%) had "almost certainly the worst quarter" for satellite subscriber losses, analyst Craig Moffett noted, as it merged Sling TV subscriber growth into its overall count, masking the core number. Moffett estimates Dish lost 151K satellite TV customers in Q2.
- Subscriber losses mean lower affiliate fees. Disney said in its call "we now expect domestic cable affiliate revenue [growth] to fall short of previous expectation, but still in high single digits."
- Other industry decliners: CRWN -8.9%; QVCA -5.4%; STRZA -6.1%
- Previously: Disney tumbles 8.9% after revenue miss; Iger talks ESPN again (Aug. 05 2015)
- Previously: Disney's Iger bullish on ESPN despite consumer changes, unbundling (Aug. 04 2015)
Aug. 5, 2015, 8:35 AM
- Liberty Interactive (NASDAQ:QVCA): Q2 net income of $242M
- Revenue of $2.25B (-9.3% Y/Y) beats by $270M.
Jul. 9, 2015, 5:29 PM
- There's been little news coming out of secretive Sun Valley -- where media moguls gather at the Allen & Co. conference for "summer camp" and sometimes rearrange billions of dollars with game-changing M&A -- but John Malone today dropped more hints about content consolidation.
- While media distribution companies have more obvious benefits from consolidation, Malone -- who has hands in Liberty Global (NASDAQ:LBTYA), Liberty Media (NASDAQ:LMCA), Liberty Interactive (NASDAQ:QVCA), Charter (NASDAQ:CHTR) and Starz (NASDAQ:STRZA) -- said economies can apply to content too.
- "It's all about global scale," he told CNBC. "If you want to be a meaningful player in most of any of these media communication businesses, you have to think about it."
- And while speculation boils about a tie-up between Malone's Starz (STRZA) and Lions Gate (NYSE:LGF) after the two swapped stock, Malone focused on the educational side: "I'm an engineer; what the hell do I know about content? Trying to understand where these ideas come from, how they get created and produced. The development of stories is really going to be important in this random-access world that Reed Hastings (NASDAQ:NFLX) is driving us into."
- Malone said Netflix changed the game, and that his companies "missed the boat a little bit" on over-the-top offerings.
- Today: NFLX +2.4%; LGF +0.9%; QVCA +0.3%; CHTR +0.2%.
Jun. 2, 2015, 6:46 PM
- Mogul John Malone floated an interesting idea today: Forget Sprint and T-Mobile -- the wireless industry could get its third major alternative to Verizon and AT&T (NYSE:T) with the merger of Charter Communications (CHTR -1.6%) and Time Warner Cable (TWC -0.9%).
- Malone was speaking at his various Liberty companies' annual meetings and noted that in 2012, the cable consortium SpectrumCo got an option to participate in a wireless MVNO service with Verizon (NYSE:VZ) after the wireless firm bought $3.9B in frequencies.
- Charter wasn't in SpectrumCo then, but merger partners TWC and Bright House are. “The concept that Comcast, a greatly enlarged Charter and Cox could together offer a WiFi-optimized connectivity service with a default to a Verizon MVNO is an interesting concept," Malone said.
- He thinks "there's very little dirty underwear" left to be found in a regulatory review of Charter-TWC after the past year's scrutiny.
- Also of interest regarding Charter capex and the dividend: “Everybody's going to say, ‘Oh he’s spending too much capital,’ but I think the end result with be worth it ... To a large degree we’re betting on Tom Rutledge and his team to wake up a sleepy cable company that was treading water in all honesty for a while and trying to satisfy shareholder pressures with buybacks and dividends as opposed to putting the money into having a competitive service offering.”
- Malone company shares today: LMCA -0.1%; LMCB flat; LMCK flat; LTRPA -0.9%; LTRPB +2.2%; QVCA +0.8%; LBRDA +0.1%; OTCQB:LBRDB flat; LBRDK -0.1%.
May 18, 2015, 4:31 AM
- Discovery Communications (NASDAQ:DISCA) CEO David Zaslav received total compensation of $156M in 2014, making him the highest-paid boss of a U.S.-listed company, excluding the top private-equity firms, an NYT-commissioned survey finds.
- Next on the list is Liberty Global's (NASDAQ:LBTYA) Michael Fries with $112M, while Gregory Maffei earned $74M for heading Liberty Media (NASDAQ:LMCA) and Liberty Interactive (NASDAQ:LVNTA). With Charter Communications' (NASDAQ:CHTR) Thomas Rutledge raking in $16M, four CEOs of companies controlled by or heavily associated with media mogul John Malone took home over $350M.
- Still, the Malone boys have nothing on Kenneth Griffin, the founder and CEO of P-E firm Citadel, who earned a mere $1.3B.
May 8, 2015, 12:56 PM
- Liberty Interactive (NASDAQ:QVCA) is trading down 2.3% despite beating EPS and revenue expectations for the first quarter though revenue at its largest unit, QVC Group, fell 2% overall as a strong dollar affected global results.
- QVC Group revenue breakouts: U.S., $1.342B (up 3%); Germany, $212M (down 15%); Japan, $199M (down 15%); UK, $156M (down 5%); Italy, $29M (down 9%).
- Mobile as a percentage of total eCommerce rose to 52.1% from last year's 38.5%, and eCommerce as a percentage of total revenue rose to 42% from 38.9%.
- In the Liberty Ventures Group, the continuing digital commerce companies (excluding floral and gifting business Provide Commerce, sold to FTD) showed revenue growth of 10%.
- Cash and liquid investments were $3.2B, flat from prior year.
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