Liberty Media (NSDQ: LINTA) president and CEO Greg Maffei said that the company sought to "take advantage of market weakness" in Q2 and so repurchased 18.1 million shares of Liberty Capital, reducing outstanding shares by 14 percent. In terms of the company's Q2 performance the Interactive group's revenue increased 9 percent as adjusted OIBDA increased 4 percent. The company cited growth at QVC and Provide Commerce. The acquisitions of Backcountry.com and Bodybuilding.com in June 2007 and December 2007, respectively, also provided a year-over-year boost. Other highlights from the quarter included:
-- Starz Entertainment revenue was up 8 percent to $275 million and adjusted OIBDA increased 24% to $68 million. The unit's operating expenses increased 4 percent due to increased SG&A expenses associated with a new Starz branding campaign.
-- Liberty Capital group's revenue increased 33 percent to $174 million. Through the DirecTV (NYSE: DTV) share buyback, Liberty's ownership of DirecTV increased to over 49 percent, though voting control remains at 48 percent per a standstill agreement.
By David Kaplan