IAC Writes Down Aereo Investment

Among several investments whose lower valuation hurt earnings
Publish date:

IAC has taken a write-down on its investment in Aereo.

That doesn't mean it is writing it off, but it’s reducing its initial valuation because it can no longer be justified.

The Barry Diller-helmed multimedia company said on its 2nd quarter earnings call that its investment in Aereo was among five investments comprising a $66.6 million write-down of "certain investments," which negatively affected adjusted earnings per share.

On an earnings call, an IAC exec, in response to a question from an analyst, said that of the five investments, two were smaller, a couple larger, and Aereo largest of all.

The Supreme Court last month ruled that Aereo's business model of using remote antennas to provide TV station signals and DVR functionality without paying copyright royalties violated the law.

Diller told Bloomberg TV back in April that if the company loses in the Supreme Court, "we're finished."

He took a little off that, saying there is possibly some "salvage," but ultimately concluded he could not see "a path forward" and that it would "probably not be able to stay in business."

Aereo has been trying to convince Washington that the upshot of the Supreme Court decision is that it is a cable service subject to the copyright license, but the Copyright Office has tentatively ruled otherwise, and a path forward is unclear.