Barry Diller’s take on Microsoft, Yahoo and more
Few in the media business know dealmaking better than Barry Diller.
So it comes as little surprise that the head of IAC/Interactive was asked about both the Microsoft-Yahoo deal and the AOL separation during an earnings conference call today. He sounded upbeat on both situations.
Here are some excepts:
One significant thing that happened is we’re not going have to talk about whether or not it’s going to happen anymore [Ed -Amen to that!]. Look, Microsoft will be able to report a greater share in terms of search and get — at least in some minds of the talkers — into being up there in competing terms with Google. And Yahoo doesn’t have to spend anymore money on search. As far as being able to execute, that is very complicated.
For us, I think that the significance is we want, need, must have at least two competitive forces, big competitive forces… I want to have two players out there wanting to get our incremental business, which is, of course, of real value to the companies.
So, I think it’s good for all parties.
On AOL, I have a lot of confidence in Tim Armstrong. I think he’s coming there as a great whoosh of energy and real change, I think, for the first time, in my god, in I don’t know how long.
I have high expectations for what he’s going to be able to do.
As far as strategies with the spinoff company or the company’s configurations in the future, we’re talking with them about ideas about commercial relationships and both in the local area and search area. We’ll see what happens.
There is no possibility of really speculating beyond the fact that it’s obvious there are interesting relationships between what AOL does and what aspects of IAC does.
We’ll have to wait and see.
Perhaps the next time we hear from Diller, he’ll be talking about his own deal, maybe how he’s used the near $2 billion in cash he still has on IAC’s balance sheet.