Time Warner Looks Hard at Share Boost Plans

23 September 2005

Time Warner ceo Richard Parsons appears to have taken Carl Icahn's corporate advice to heart.

The interventionist shareholder's pocketbook will have throbbed with pleasure on hearing Parsons tell an investor conference this week that the media empire is "looking hard" at its strategy to boost its stockmarket value.

Parsons acknowledged it might be possible to increase a planned $5 billion (€4.09bn; £2.76bn) share-buyback, though he did not cede to Icahn's demands for a $20bn buyback and a complete spin-off of the company's cable TV division.

He stuck with TW's already stated 16% spinoff, saying: "Now is not the time to cast it off." But he did imply that there might be movement in the future.

TW is also committed to America Online, Parsons told the New York conference, eager to dampen speculation that the internet portal could to be partly sold off to Microsoft's MSN [WAMN: 19-Sept-05].

He believes AOL is "undervalued" and its ongoing transformation from a subscriber based service to an advertiser-funded one will boost its fortunes and those of TW.

Data sourced from multichannel.com; additional content by WARC staff