Cendant, Liberty Media Form Alliance for Cable, Broadband

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Diversified hotel, auto and real estate conglomerate Cendant Corp., New York, this week said it entered a strategic alliance with Liberty Media Corp., Englewood, CO, to explore opportunities for leveraging Cendant's direct marketing capabilities through Liberty's cable television and broadband technologies. Liberty Digital, a subsidiary of Liberty Media, which is wholly owned by AT&T, New York, has an agreement to provide interactive programming through AT&T's cable system. A Liberty spokeswoman said such technology might be suited to adopt Cendant's direct marketing properties, which include discount membership clubs for auto services, travel and shopping.

The two companies also said they will work together on other joint ventures and will create a new entity that will provide broadband video, voice and data content to Cendant hotels globally.

As part of the alliance, Liberty will purchase 18 million shares of Cendant stock and warrants to purchase another 29 million shares, and Liberty chairman John C. Malone will purchase another 1 million Cendant shares.

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