Business mogul Rupert Murdoch is looking to trade DirecTV Group,
the nation�s leading satellite TV operator, for something he values
even more...greater control of his own company.
Murdoch is negotiating to barter his 38% stake in DirecTV to
cable pioneer John Malone, for the 19% voting stake in News
Corp...owned by Malone�s Liberty Media Corp. The trade would free
Murdoch from fears that Liberty�s chunk could fall into unfriendly
hands and threaten his family�s grip on News Corp, which controls
nearly 30% of the stock.
Under the terms being discussed, Liberty would trade its 19%
stake in News Corp., which is worth more than $11 billion, for the
38% stake in DirecTV, which is valued at about $9 billion. (Liberty
would get another asset in the trade, such as a TV station and would
contribute some cash so the deal would be tax-free for News Corp.)
The barter deal would save the two companies as much as $4.5
billion in capital-gains taxes, according to a tax analyst.