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Posts Tagged ‘James Murdoch’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Aereo Files for Bankruptcy | MSNBC Hires Ex-WH Staffer

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Aereo Files for Bankruptcy (TVSpy)
With a post on the company’s blog Friday morning, Aereo founder and CEO Chet Kanojia announced the company had filed for bankruptcy protection. THR The digital TV service, which broadcast network owners battled in courts for offering access to broadcast TV signals via digital devices, made a voluntary Chapter 11 filing, it said in the statement. “We encountered significant challenges from the incumbent media companies,” said Kanojia in the statement. Mashable Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection is typically expensive and allows for the company to restructure its debt. While filing for bankruptcy does not necessarily mean the end of the business, Kanojia struck a tone in a statement on Aereo’s website that insinuated the company was done. Variety New York-based Aereo had raised about $97 million, from investors including IAC chairman Barry Diller, media investor Gordon Crawford, Himalaya Capital Management, Highland Capital Partners and FirstMark Capital. Earlier this month Aereo laid off a majority of its staff, including employees in New York and Boston. The company said a small executive team of about a dozen people would remain. GigaOM Aereo’s bankruptcy petition shows it owes roughly $2 million to a list of creditors that include Internet companies like Level 3 and Google, as well as several law firms. But the most significant creditors on the list are names like ABC and Fox, the TV networks that are continuing to sue Aereo over copyright infringement. Aereo’s filing simply states “unknown” in the amount owed to the “litigation party” TV stations, which also include PBS, Telemundo and NBC.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: García Márquez Dead at 87 | Whoopi Gets New Gig | Wallace Re-Signs

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Gabriel García Márquez, Nobel Laureate, Dies at 87 (GalleyCat)
Colombian author Gabriel García Márquez passed away Thursday. He was 87 years old. Time The Nobel Prize-winning author was hospitalized for nine days in late March for an infection in his lungs and urinary tract. He had been recovering in his home in Mexico City since April 8. NYT His death was confirmed by Cristóbal Pera, his former editor at Random House. García Márquez, who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982, wrote fiction rooted in a mythical Latin American landscape of his own creation, but his appeal was universal. His books were translated into dozens of languages. He was among a select roster of canonical writers — Dickens, Tolstoy and Hemingway among them — who were embraced both by critics and a mass audience. The Guardian Journalists gathered outside García Márquez’s house in Mexico City in the hope that one of the family members who was reportedly at his side would emerge. Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto expressed sadness at the death of “one of the greatest writers of our time,” in the name of Mexico, the novelist’s adopted home. Chilean writer Luis Sepúlveda was quoted by the Mexican newspaper Reforma as saying that he was “the most important writer in Spanish of the 20th century.” WSJ Born in the sleepy town of Aracataca, Colombia, García Márquez was best known for his 1967 masterpiece, One Hundred Years of Solitude. In a career spanning more than 60 years, García Márquez wrote some of the Spanish language’s most revered books, many of which became best sellers in the U.S. They included Autumn of The Patriarch, Chronicle of A Death Foretold, Love in The Time of Cholera and The General in His Labyrinth. García Márquez was also an accomplished journalist, whose lyrical, deeply reported stories first caught the eye of readers in Colombia’s capital, Bogotá, in the early 1950s. He later became renowned not only his profiles of presidents and despots but for the real-life close ties he cultivated with leaders ranging from Fidel Castro to Bill Clinton to François Mitterrand.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Murdoch Ups Sons | Twitter Ban Overturned | NYT Adds Digital Subs

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Rupert Murdoch Elevates Eldest Son to Be His News Corp. Co-Chairman (The Guardian / Greenslade Blog)
Rupert Murdoch’s eldest son, Lachlan, has been promoted to the role of non-executive co-chairman on the News Corp. board. It means that the two will work alongside each other. Rupert, the executive chairman, described the appointment as “recognition of Lachlan’s entrepreneurial leadership and passion for news, digital media and sport.” TVNewser Lachlan has been named non-executive chairman at both News Corp. and 21st Century Fox. The 42-year-old has been a director of both companies, but effectively left the media empire in 2005 where he had been deputy chief operating officer directly responsible for News Corp.’s U.S. television stations group and publishing assets. After Lachlan left News Corp., Roger Ailes, the co-founder and chairman of Fox News Channel, was named chairman of News Corp.’s (now 21st Century Fox’s) television stations group. FishbowlNY The promotion means that Lachlan is all but guaranteed to take over News Corp. when Rupert steps down. In the past, it was believed that James Murdoch was the heir apparent, but no more. James was promoted as well — to co-chief operating officer at 21st Century Fox. Financial Times James’ elevation comes two years after he was embroiled in the U.K. phone hacking scandal as the former head of News Corp.’s U.K. newspaper business. His new position gives him a more central executive role at one of America’s most global media companies, in contrast to Lachlan’s non-executive position, keeping him in contention in a succession race that has seen numerous twists. James will share his new title with Chase Carey, a trusted adviser and second-in-command to Rupert, to whom he had reported in his previous role as deputy chief operating officer. Reuters Each son has at various times been seen as heir apparent, and it is unclear how well they will work together when Murdoch finally hands over the companies. The Murdoch family controls both Fox and News Corp. through a trust that has a 38 percent ownership stake of Class B shares with voting rights. A source familiar with the companies said that the plan to elevate Lachlan and James had been in the works for a while and that a tussle over control would be unlikely.

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Lachlan Murdoch Gets Top Spot on News Corp Board

The future of News Corp just landed in the lap of Lachlan Murdoch. The New York Times reports that Lachlan — most recently a director of News Corp and 21st Century Fox — has been promoted to non-executive co-chairman, the top spot on News Corp’s board. Lachlan’s father, Rupert Murdoch, owns 40 percent of the company, and will remain executive chairman.

The promotion means that Lachlan is all but guaranteed to take over News Corp when Rupert steps down. In the past, it was believed that James Murdoch was the heir apparent, but no more. In what seems like a “Oh, I’ve got a present for you too, son” move, James was promoted as well — to co-chief operating officer at 21st Century Fox.

In a statement, Rupert said Lachlan’s promotion was “a sign of confidence in the growth potential of News Corporation and a recognition of Lachlan’s entrepreneurial leadership and passion for news, digital media and sport.”

Why Rupert Murdoch Bought Out YES Network Two Years Early

256px-YankeesWhen Rupert Murdoch bought 49 percent of the Yankees- and Brooklyn Nets-focused YES Network over a year ago, he pledged to take a majority stake after three years.

On Friday, 21st Century Fox announced a deal to raise its ownership of the Yankees Sports and Entertainment Network to 80 percent from 49 percent, roughly two years ahead of schedule.

“Our investment in the YES Network underscores our commitment to growing our global sports portfolio with offerings that are exceptional and unique,” James Murdoch, deputy chief operating officer/boss’s son at 21st Century Fox, said in a statement.

The deal, pending regulatory approval, is expected to close by the end of the first calendar quarter. Yankee Global Enterprises will hold on to the remaining 20 percent stake.

So, why did this deal come early?

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James Murdoch Sells 18 Percent of Stake in 21st Century Fox

James MurdochJames Murdoch, deputy chief operating officer of 21st Century Fox, has sold about 18.5 percent of his stake in the company. The Wall Street Journal reports that the transaction was valued at $15 million. The sale was for 455,000 Class A shares, at an average of $32.97 per share.

News of the sale is interesting, if only because it comes about two weeks after 21st Century Fox reported first-quarter profits plummeted by 44 percent. However, a spokesperson for 21st Century Fox said young Murdoch sold the stake for “financial planning purposes.”

Feel free to interpret that however you want.

News Corp. to Officially Split June 28

At the risk of beating a dead multi-billion dollar company, let’s talk about that News Corp. split again. The board voted to move the plan forward, and made June 28 the official separation date. The two new companies will be News Corp. (publishing) and 21st Century Fox (movies and TV).

Aside from the official date, the other thing to note is that there’s more information about the boards of each company. Forbes reports that Rupert Murdoch, Lachlan Murdoch and James Murdoch will have seats on both. News Corp.’s board will also feature John Elkann (former Fiat chairman); Ana Paula Pessoa (partner at Brunswick Group, a PR firm); and Masroor Siddiqui (an investor). At 21st Century Fox there’ll be Delphine Arnault (deputy general manager at Christian Dior); Jacques Nasser (former Ford CEO); and Robert Silberman (executive chairman at Strayer Education).

Now, who wants to have a News Corp. Split Party on the 28th? We’re thinking jello shooters and an ice sculpture of Rupert giving a thumbs up. We’re flexible though.

Harvey Weinstein, Ali MacGraw and the Brains Behind Coffee With Tim Cook

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Where to begin? This week at 55th and Fifth, the scene in the dining room provided whiplash-inducing people watching with a tasty mix of moguls on the menu (Harvey Weinstein, Jimmy Finkelstein) with a side of social swans (Sharon Bush, Patricia Kluge, Terry Allen Kramer).

Of course, it wouldn’t be a Wednesday at Michael’s without the random celebrity sighting. I was thrilled to hear that I would be sitting next to none other than Ali MacGraw today. The ageless actress, who catapulted into the pop culture hall of fame with her iconic performance (and preppy wardrobe) in the 1970 tearjerker Love Story, turned every head in the place when she arrived — which is quite a feat among this crowd. She was beyond gracious as diners (including yours truly) lined up for pictures. Several years ago, I worked with her on The Fashion Group International’s Night of Stars where she was honored with FGI’s entertainment award for her contributions to film and fashion. When I re-introduced myself, she immediately said, “Oh, I remember that night. It was so much fun!” and then proceeded to tell me this delicious bit of gossip from the evening: “I was standing next to Bill Blass when he saw Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones come in. And Bill turned to the person next to him and said, “Finally, some real movie stars!” She giggled, clearly delighted by the memory of the snarky diss from the designer.

Diane Clehane and Coppy Holzman

Speaking of the power of celebrity, I was joined today by Charitybuzz CEO and founder Coppy Holzman who dazzled me with tales of his work with the famous and philanthropic. His company, which he founded in 2005, is currently the world’s largest online charity auction site and is the go-to partner for every famous person with a charity looking to raise serious money for their pet causes.

It all started at a backyard fundraising party for The Clinton Library in Westport, Connecticut that Coppy attended where he met President Bill Clinton and Chevy Chase. “Isn’t there a way  for you to use your experience on the Internet to raise for the library?” the host of the party asked Coppy. On the spot, he came up with the idea of auctioning off a lunch with the former president. One year later, The Chevy Chase Earth Day Auction brought in $250,000 for the library, including $80,000 paid by one bidder to lunch with Clinton and Chase. Since then, Coppy has worked with Clinton on many different initiatives. “There is no bigger celebrity in the world,” he says. The top dollar paid to spend the day with Hillary’s husband: $255,000 in an auction last year.

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News Corp. Confirms Purchase of YES Network Stake

News Corporation just made the rumor that it was purchasing a stake in YES Network a fact. According to a press release from the company, the deal for News Corp. to acquire a 49 percent stake in YES will close by the end of the year.

As part of the deal (numbers were not disclosed) Yankee Global Enterprises, YES’s parent, Goldman Sachs, and others reduce their stake. After three years, News Corp. has the green light to purchase up to 80 percent of the network.  Also, buried in the same release, YES Network now owns the broadcast rights to Yankees games through 2042.

“This is a tremendous opportunity to enhance News Corporation’s industry-leading portfolio of sports properties, while also strategically re-entering the New York market,” said James Murdoch, News Corp.’s deputy COO, in a statement. “The YES Network represents the gold standard for regional sports networks and is a pioneer in sports media.”

“FOX wrote the book on regional sports networks, and we are excited to partner with FOX and take advantage of this opportunity to build upon our leadership position,” added Tracy Dolgin, YES Network’s president and CEO.

Report: Rupert Murdoch Interested in the LA Times*

A day after KPBS relayed Doug Manchester’s possible interest in acquiring the LA Times, there is news of a much bigger media mogul sniffing around this city’s prized daily newspaper. According to LA Times reporter Meg James, her new boss could potentially turn out to be none other than Rupert Murdoch:

News Corp. executives have had preliminary talks with debt holders about acquiring the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune, according to two ranking News Corp. executives and others familiar with the situation.

These people cautioned that talks are in the early stages, and that a deal is by no means certain… On trips to Los Angeles, Murdoch is known to mark up the newspaper with a Sharpie pen to illustrate how he would design pages.

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