Time Warner Focus Turns to Possible Breakup

Investors want stripped-down, agile company
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 28, 2007 10:19 AM CST
People walk by the Time Warner building, Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2007, in New York. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – What do you do when you take over the world’s biggest media company? If you’re new Time Warner CEO Jeffrey Bewkes, you probably sharpen some knives. Bewkes may soon spin off AOL as well as the conglomerate’s cable and magazine divisions, Bloomberg reports. “There’s nothing special necessarily about being the biggest,” argues one expert who manages 11.3 million Time Warner shares.

After the paring down, Time would be left with its movie and TV network businesses, resembling Viacom in size and, hopefully, share price. Viacom trades at nine times earnings, Time at just seven. “You have to make sure your two businesses are rocking,” said one analyst, whose company holds 2.29 million Time shares. “People are used to this stock going nowhere.”