...$TC NEW YORK -- Home Shopping Network Inc. yesterday named Barry Diller chairman, hoping to use his programming acumen to shake the television retailer out of its also-ran status.
In a second move related to Mr. Diller's TV ambitions, Silver King Communications Inc. said it agreed to buy Savoy Pictures Entertainment Inc., a television and movie producer that also owns four television stations, in stock.
Under the terms of the purchase, Savoy shareholders will receive 0.2 shares of Silver King common stock for each Savoy share. Savoy shareholders will own 20 percent of Silver King.
The two moves would help the former Fox TV chief achieve his long-held goal of running a major network. Control of Home Shopping gives Mr. Diller money to buy programming for the television retailer, while adding Savoy would provide more viewers through its four TV stations.
Mr. Diller's rising prominence at both companies is part of a master plan by John Malone, Tele-Communications Inc.'s president, whose company will be a major Silver King shareholder. Mr. Diller has an option to buy 15 million shares of Home Shopping.