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Liberty Media's John Malone Digs At Sirius CEO

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Media and communications company Liberty Media's (NASDAQ: LMCA) chairman John Malone has said publically that he is more concerned about evolving technologies than Sirius (NASDAQ: SIRI) CEO Mel Karmazin.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, the 71-year-old Malone said, "I'm a very long-term investor, despite my age. So I tend to be looking out 10 or 20 years, whereas I think Mel in all honesty right now has got a pretty short-term focus. I think they do an excellent job of running the company but we would be making more investments and...would at least look at globalizing."

The battle for control between the two men has been ongoing, and this would appear to be the first sign that the frustrations could be boiling over.

On Thursday, Benzinga reported that Malone is pushing for a spin-off of Sirius XM (NASDAQ: SIRI) through a process known as a tax-free Morris Trust spin. "We are involved in negotiations about whether or not or how much a control premium [to effect a deal] would need to be," Malone said.

Benzinga reported that according to Liberty's Malone, the biggest snags in a potential transaction right now are related to taxes. CNBC notes that Malone only likes to do transactions when they are tax free. Currently, Liberty is evaluating a number of options, including a potential stock buyback.

On Friday, Liberty Media traded at about $92, up roughly 2.5 percent. Sirius XM Radio traded at about $2, down roughly 1.2 percent.

Follow me @BCallwood.

Posted-In: CNBCCNBC News Wall Street Journal Contracts Management Media Trading Ideas Best of Benzinga


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