NEW YORK It took him almost a year to accomplish and required winning a legal battle against Liberty Media's John Malone, but Barry Diller has finally split his Internet hodgepodge IAC/InterActiveCorp. into five separate companies.
The split will allow investors to choose which bits of Diller's former conglomerate they want to invest in and which ones they'd prefer to avoid, and gives each company its own board of directors and CEO.
Malone had unsuccessfully sued to prevent Diller from completing his plan because, as a large investor in a singular company with a two-tier voting structure, his power is severely diluted now that the company has been broken down into separate entities that don't grant him super-voting rights.
After the first day of trading, Wall Street rewarded the company now known simply as IAC with the biggest market cap, $2.33 billion. IAC includes the assets Ask.com, Evite, Match.com and Citysearch.com. The company trades under the symbol IACID but soon will trade under IACI.
The other four companies are:
-- Ticketmaster, which trades as TKTM and sported a $1.29 billion market cap. Diller, who once ran Fox Broadcasting and Paramount Pictures, is chairman of the board of both Ticketmaster and IAC.
-- Interval Leisure Group, which trades as IILG and had an $885.3 million market cap Thursday. The company operates the ResortQuest Hawaii and Interval International time-share businesses.
-- HSN, which trades as HSNI and has an $852.4 million market cap. It includes the HSN TV network as well as the Internet and catalog retailing businesses.
-- Tree.com, trading as TREE and sporting a $124.2 million market cap. It operates the LendingTree.com real estate business.