RealTime IT News

USAi Continues to Evolve

Barry Diller's USA Interactive on Thursday announced that it is changing its name to InterActiveCorp (IAC), effective June 23.

The move comes just over a year after Diller combined the movie and cable assets into French media company Vivendi Universal Entertainment. Since then, the company has moved swiftly into all subsectors of the ecommerce field, with the exception of the auction space dominated by eBay. In this year's annual letter to shareholders, Diller reaffirmed those vows.

In May, the company took a foray into finance with the proposed acquisition of LendingTree . In April, USAI moved to consolidate its majority-ownership of Hotels.com in a $1.1 billion deal that bought out the remaining assets of the travel play it didn't already own. The month before, USAI acquired all the outstanding stock of travel site Expedia in a $3.3 billion deal. At the same time, Diller said he is resigning as CEO of Vivendi Universal Entertainment.

"We began as Silver King (a television broadcaster) and over these last 8 years, as we built the company up, we changed the corporate name several times to reflect our leading business interests," the chairman and CEO said in his prepared statement. "We kept the USA name when we contributed our entertainment assets to a joint venture with Vivendi in 2002 knowing that it had limited descriptive value but at least would keep confusion to a minimum during the transition as well as being reluctant to make a name up out of some anagrammatic or other creative process."

"Now that we have a clearly articulated business strategy, which is to be the world's largest and most profitable interactive commerce company by pursuing a multi-brand strategy, and have made real progress in simplifying our corporate and operating structure, we feel it is appropriate to drop the 'USA' from 'USA Interactive' and simply call ourselves InterActiveCorp, or the shorthand - IAC, which we hope over time people will identify as our company."

"Although for awhile this may all be awkward for those that follow the company, we really are serious about getting on with the building of what we believe can be a great and enduring enterprise."

The company's Internet address will be IAC.com and its ticker symbol on Nasdaq will change from USAI to IACI on June 23.