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Liberty splits off DirecTV into new larger unit Add to ...

Liberty Media Corp. said yesterday it plans to combine the No. 1 U.S. satellite TV service DirecTV Group Inc. DTV-Q with its other media assets to form a new company. Liberty, controlled by cable pioneer John Malone, plans to combine DirecTV with assets held by Liberty Entertainment, including Game Show Network, FUN Technologies and three regional sports networks. Liberty owns a 54-per-cent economic stake in DirecTV. The new company will retain the DirecTV name and still be led by chief executive officer Chase Carey, with Mr. Malone remaining as chairman of an unchanged board. But Mr. Malone's voting stake will fall to 24 per cent, from the 48 per cent that Liberty Media currently has. Holders of Liberty Entertainment shares will receive 1.1111 shares of DirecTV Class A for each share. That translates to DirecTV paying a premium of around $350-million (U.S.).

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