IAC/InterActiveCorp (also known as IAC) is an American media and Internet company, with over 150 brands across 100 countries, headquartered in New York City. Joey Levin, who previously led the company's Search & Applications segment, has been the company's Chief Executive Officer since June 2015.
IAC was established in 1986 as Silver King Broadcasting Company, as part of a plan to increase viewership of the Home Shopping Network (HSN) by purchasing local television stations. By 1988, Silver King had bought 11 stations for about $220 million. The company was later renamed as HSN Communications, Inc., and then Silver King Communications, Inc. In 1992, Silver King was spun off to HSN shareholders as a separately traded public company. In August 1995, Barry Diller acquired control of Silver King, in a deal backed by the company's largest shareholder, Liberty Media. Diller, who had led the creation of the Fox network, reportedly hoped to use Silver King's stations as the foundation for a new broadcast network.
In December 1996, Silver King acquired an 80% stake in HSN for $1.3 billion in stock, and changed its own name to HSN, Inc. At the same time, the company acquired Savoy Pictures, a failed film studio that owned four Fox affiliate stations through SF Broadcasting, for $210 million in stock.
The company acquired several assets in the late 1990s. HSN purchased a controlling stake in Ticketmaster Group in July 1997, and then acquired the rest of the company in June 1998. In February 1998, it acquired the television assets of Universal Studios (including USA Network, Sci-Fi Channel, and Universal Television's domestic production and distribution arms) for $4.1 billion. The company's name was changed to USA Networks, Inc. at this point. Continuing its acquisition strategy, the company acquired the Hotel Reservations Network in May 1999 for $149 million.
USA Networks merged the online division of Ticketmaster with city guide website CitySearch in September 1998, establishing a new company that went public as Ticketmaster Online–CitySearch (TMCS). USA then sold Ticketmaster proper to TMCS in 2001, retaining a 61 percent share in the combined company, which became known as simply Ticketmaster. USA brought Ticketmaster back under full ownership in 2003, purchasing all outstanding shares.
In the early 2000s, USA Networks began divesting itself of its traditional television broadcasting and production units. In May 2001, Univision Communications acquired USA Broadcasting (a division of USA Networks including 13 local stations). The next year, Vivendi bought the rest of USA's broadcast entertainment businesses, including the USA Network and Sci-Fi Channel. This led to the creation of a new company named Vivendi Universal Entertainment, led by Diller. Throughout this transition, USA Networks continued to build up its online portfolio. In July 2001, the company entered the online travel business with its acquisition of Expedia, followed the next year by an acquisition of Interval International.
Following the shift in focus to online assets, the company changed its name to USA Interactive (USAI) in May 2002; InterActiveCorp in June 2003; and finally to IAC/InterActiveCorp in July 2004.
In August 2003, IAC acquired the online mortgage comparison site LendingTree, and in September, the company added discount travel website Hotwire.com to its growing list of acquisitions. In October, IAC agreed to buy French travel site Anyway.com from Transat A.T. for $62.7 million.
In 2004 and 2005, IAC continued its growth through acquisition, adding assets including TripAdvisor, ServiceMagic, and Ask Jeeves. It also launched Gifts.com during this period. In August 2005, the company bundled together its travel-related sites and spun them off as a new public company, Expedia, Inc. Additional acquisitions in 2006 included Shoebuy.com and CollegeHumor.
In May 2008, IAC and Ask.com acquired Lexico, the owner of Dictionary.com, Thesaurus.com, and Reference.com. In August 2008, IAC spun off several of its businesses, including: Tree.com (formerly LendingTree), the Home Shopping Network, Ticketmaster, and Interval International. 2009 saw the acquisition of Urbanspoon and People Media, and the launch of production company Notional.
In July 2009, IAC partnered with Ben Silverman to create Electus, a company focused on multimedia production and online distribution.
IAC's long-time largest shareholder, Liberty Media, exited the company in 2010, following a protracted dispute over the 2008 spinoffs. Liberty traded its IAC stock for $220 million in cash, plus ownership of Evite and Gifts.com. On the same day, Diller stepped down as CEO, though he remained as chairman, with a 34% voting stake in the company; Match.com CEO Greg Blatt was appointed to succeed him.
In 2010, IAC acquired dating site Singlesnet and fitness site DailyBurn. In February 2011, IAC acquired the free-to-contact dating site, OkCupid, for $50 million. In April 2011, IAC extended its deal with Google, originally worth $3.5 billion, to hand over all search advertising on Ask.com and other IAC search products through March 31, 2016.
On February 14, 2012, Barry Diller introduced Aereo, an Internet television service. In March 2012 in New York City, Aereo started streaming all of the broadcast networks to smartphones, tablets and televisions with Internet capability. On June 25, 2014, in a 6-3 Opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against Aereo. The Court found that Aereo infringed upon the rights of copyright holders.
On August 26, 2012, IAC acquired About.com from the New York Times.
In January 2013, IAC acquired online tutoring firm Tutor.com. On August 3, 2013, IAC sold Newsweek to the International Business Times on undisclosed terms. In November 2013, IAC acquired Investopedia and PriceRunner from ValueClick.
On December 22, 2013, IAC fired their Director of Corporate Communications, Justine Sacco after an AIDS joke she posted to Twitter went viral, being re-tweeted and scorned around the world. The incident became a byword for the need for people to be cautious about what they post on social media.
In January 2014, IAC acquired a segment of ValueClick's business, including Investopedia and PriceRunner. Later that year, in August, IAC acquired ASKfm for an undisclosed sum.
In January 2015, IAC sold Urbanspoon to Zomato for $52 million.
In June 2015, IAC announced its intent to pursue an IPO of Match Group, which officially filed documents for an initial public offering on October 16. Shares of Match Group (MTCH) debuted on the Nasdaq on November 19, and finished that first day up 23% from the initial public offering price of $12.
On July 14, 2015, the dating service PlentyOfFish was purchased for $575 million in cash to become a part of Match Group.
On December 9, 2015, IAC announced the creation of IAC Publishing, a unit that combines The Daily Beast, About.com, Dictionary.com and Investopedia into a single operating group.
On January 21, 2016, IAC announced a realignment of its reportable segments and a change of its ticker symbol to IAC from IACI.
In March 2016, IAC completed the sale of PriceRunner to NS Intressenter AB, a Swedish private equity firm.
On May 2, 2016, IAC’s Vimeo announced the acquisition of VHX, a platform for premium over-the-top subscription video channels.
On October 10, 2016, IAC's HomeAdvisor announced the acquisition of MyHammer, a home services marketplace in Germany.
On December 30, 2016, IAC completed the sale of ShoeBuy to Jet.
On February 9, 2017, IAC's HomeAdvisor announced the acquisition of HomeStars, a Canadian home services platform.
On March 27, 2017, IAC's HomeAdvisor announced the acquisition of MyBuilder, a home services marketplace in the UK.
On May 1, 2017, IAC announced it had entered into a definitive agreement with Angie's List to combine IAC’s HomeAdvisor and Angie’s List into a new publicly-traded company, to be called ANGI Homeservices Inc.
In January 2016, IAC categorized its businesses into distinct segments for the purposes of financial reporting. Those segments are labelled by the company as Match Group, Publishing, Applications, Video, and HomeAdvisor. Each business listed may have multiple brands connected to it. HomeAdvisor ceased to be one of these when it became part of the publicly-traded ANGI Homeservices Inc. in 2017.
IAC's board of directors consists of the following members: