Barry Diller, Paramount Global in acquisition talks: Report

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Billionaire media mogul Barry Diller is reportedly sniffing around Paramount Global after its high-profile deal with Skydance Media crashed and burned.

Diller’s company, IAC, has signed nondisclosure agreements with National Amusements, the family-owned majority shareholder of Paramount, that will both parties to share and discuss confidential financial and other information that could be vital to formulating a potential deal, four sources told The New York Times

According to two of those sources, the IAC NDAs were signed after the Skydance deal broke up in June 2024.

The Times notes that it is not clear how far talks between IAC and Paramount have progressed.

Diller previously ran Paramount Pictures starting in 1974 and has been credited with injecting new life into the film studio. He previously pursued a deal to acquire the studio outright, but Sumner Redstone’s National Amusements ultimately won that battle, eventually forming the current Paramount Global that includes assets also linked to the Viacom and CBS names as well as the studio assets of Paramount.

Diller has extensive experience in business and media.

Over the years, Diller has been linked to a variety of big names in broadcasting, including running Vivendi Universal Entertainment and HSN.

The company also has had its hands in a variety of new media companies, ranging from dating site Match.com to Ticketmaster to Expedia and video hosting service Vimeo.

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Currently, IAC has four distinct divisions, home services group Angi, media company Dotdash Meredith, a search division centered around Ask.com and catch-all vertical titled “other,” that includes The Daily Beast.

Dotdash Meredith consists of both print and digital publishing properties, including the former Time Inc. properties Meredith acquired. Meredith also previously owned TV stations that have since been acquired by Gray Television (Diller did not directly oversee these stations, and they were specifically excluded from IAC’s purchase of Meredith assets).

Paramount is facing roughly $14 billion in debt and an uncertain outlook as a legacy media company.

It’s not immediately clear how IAC would finance acquiring Paramount.

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