HANDS ACROSS THE CABLE

THE INSIDE STORY OF HOW MEDIA TITANS OVERCAME COMPETITORS AND EGOS TO CREATE A $20 BILLION GIANT

THE PRIZE UP FOR GRABS, TED Turner's cable empire, was so enviable that two of America's most fearsome bosses tried to make pre-emptive bids for it. Both made their proposals in secret. First came General Electric's Jack Welch, who pitched a dramatic cost-cutting plan. Then, at almost the last minute, came Fox chief Rupert Murdoch, who offered Turner the chance to write his own ticket.

The courting finally produced a winner last week when the most ardent suitor, Time Warner, prevailed after five weeks of dealmaking. But not before two simultaneous and highly contentious board meetings took place in New York...

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