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Katie Couric Inches Closer to ABC Deal

The Katie Couric saga continues. Now that the former “CBS Evening News” anchor has left the Tiffany network, all signs point to her signing a deal with ABC for a syndicated show, as well as some regular appearances on ABC News programs.

The latest comes from The Daily Beast’s Howard Kurtz, who notes that ABC changed its offer to Couric, effectively giving her control of her daytime show… and a larger piece of the revenue should it become a hit.

Under the multi-year proposal now on the table, Couric would have almost total ownership of the venture—giving her the potential to make far more than her $15 million-a-year anchor salary.

ABC News President Ben Sherwood provided an important boost, having lunch with Couric and making clear he wanted her to contribute to his news division as well.

The result, people familiar with the situation say, is that Couric is close to signing with ABC, and while the final negotiating points haven’t been resolved, an announcement is likely in early June. The only other contender at this point is CBS Corp., which has formally withdrawn its offer but—under a contract that expires June 5—retains the right to match ABC’s final deal.

As Kurtz notes, should Couric sign with ABC, the network would have quite the powerhouse lineup of female journalists, with Couric, Barbara Walters, Diane Sawyer, and Christiane Amanpour under the same roof.

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