IAC’s talks to merge The Daily Beast with Newsweek didn’t go anywhere, but IAC (NSDQ: IACI) CEO Barry Diller said during the company’s earnings call today that his online news magazine still wants to launch some sort of print product. He described the idea of a print “companion” to the Daily Beast as making sense in part because of editor Tina Brown’s extensive print experience. “One way or another I suspect we’ll either find something or we’ll create (it) somehow,” he said, noting that Politico has had success with its own print edition. “The Daily Beast is 24/7. The print product (would) clearly not (be) and that has some benefits.”
Diller said, however, that a print product was not necessary to make the Daily Beast financially successful. “We don’t need to do anything,” he said, adding that the Daily Beast was on track “in reducing our loss.” He described break-even as not being on “some distant shore,” although he added that he couldn’t “exactly see Russia from Alaska.”
Much of the call revolved around a discussion of the company’s Match personals business, which performed particularly well during the quarter. Diller said that even though Match was the leader in personals, the market as a whole remained “very under penetrated,” describing a “virtuous circle” in which more people signed on to the product as its user base grew. He said that both the Match as well the company’s Ask.com search business were “double-digit growth opportunities” for the company.
Diller also disclosed that the company was in discussions about the sale of a couple of its “relatively small” businesses. “People knock on our door all the time,” he said.