Barry Diller is an entrepreneur who amassed a media empire that consisted of several cable channels, Ticket master and many internet companies. He is the Senior Executive and Chairman of IAC/InterActiveCorp as well as the media executive and creator of Fox Broadcasting Company and USA Broadcasting.
Diller was born on 2nd February 1942 in San Francisco, California. After attending one semester at UCLA he started his career by working in the mailroom of the William Morris Agency. After three years he had become a talent agent. He began working at ABC as an assistant in 1966. Diller rose higher in the ranks and ended up becoming the vice president. During this time he created the ‘made for TV’ movies idea and also started the TV miniseries ‘Roots’. He took up the offer of becoming chief executive and chairman of Paramount Studios in 1974 turning the staggering company around by showing hit movies in his tenure such as ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark and Indiana Jones’, ‘Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, ‘Terms of Endearment’, ‘Beverly Hills Cop’, ‘Grease’ and ‘Saturday Night Fever’.
Diller joined the Twentieth Century-Fox in 1984 after which he established the Fox Television Network. This channel targeted younger male viewers by airing hugely popular shows such as ‘Married with Children’ and ‘The Simpsons’. Diller was a very strong headed volatile personality. In 1992 he left the company after a rift with Rupert Murdoch. The same year he purchased the shopping channel ‘QVC’ which he resigned from in 1995. He lost the bids to buying Paramount and CBS. Diller decided to build his own media empire in 1995. For that he acquired the Si-Fi Channel and USA and became the chairman of the Home Shopping Network. Two years later he became the co-owner of Ticketmaster.
The next year he merged with Citysearch which was an online city guide provider. The company became ‘Ticketmaster Online-Citysearch’ and it became public in 1999. Its family of websites includes CityAuction, Astro Abby, Match.com and Live Daily. Diller negotiated a merger of 500 million dollars of Styleclick.com with USA’s Internet Shopping Network. His expertise of combining commerce and content is evident from the success of the Home Shopping Network.
Diller is the chairman of Expedia and IAC/InterActive Corp which acquired Ask.com in 2005. He is the owner of over 500 web companies. Diller is also on the board of Coca-Cola from 2002. According to the New York Times, he was the highest paid executive in 2005. Diller mentored many people who later went on to become big media executives such as Michael Eisner, Dawn Steel, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Garth Ancier and Don Simpson.
He got married to Diane Von Fürstenberg, a fashion designer by profession, in 2005. He is the owner of the largest yacht in the world. It is 92.92 meters in length. He is a democrat and supports all political causes of the party. His net worth was estimated to be $1.8 billion in 2012. The media mogul is on the Forbes List of Billionaires.