Barry Diller, one of the first major entertainment moguls to recognize the potential of the Internet, and John Malone, head of the sprawling Liberty Media, have come to a parting of the ways -- sort of. Malone, who invested heavily in Diller's IAC/InterActiveCorp but who has been feuding with him since Diller broke up The Company into five new "Baby Barrys" in 2008, has sold his interest in IAC for cash and two of IAC's companies, Evite and Gifts.com. In a statement, Malone said, "Our 17-year relationship with Barry has been very beneficial in creating value for our shareholders, and this transaction represents an efficient exit for Liberty from our IAC stake." Liberty, however, will continue to hold stakes in other IAC spinoffs, including the travel website, Expedia.com, which spun off from IAC in 2005. Diller, meanwhile, said that he was stepping down as CEO of IAC (but retaining the chairmanship) and will be succeeded by Greg Blatt, who holds the CEO title with the IAC unit Match.com.

02/12/2010