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Large payday looms

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  • | 11:00 a.m. July 14, 2017
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Mindy Grossman, a celebrity CEO when she ran St. Petersburg-based HSN for a decade, might collect a big payday in the blockbuster QVC-HSN acquisition.

Grossman left the TV shopping network in April, when she was named CEO of Weight Watchers. She held 536,499 shares of HSN stock through March 27, according to public filings. If Grossman hadn't exercised those options, her holdings would be worth $21.65 million under the current terms of the QVC-HSN deal.

The acquisition, announced July 6, calls for West Chester, Pa.-based QVC, a unit of Liberty Interactive, to buy HSN for $2.1 billion. The deal, according to a statement, is expected to close by the fourth quarter.

There are other on-paper financial winners in the purchase, beyond Grossman.

New York-based investment management giant BlackRock, according to an April 10 report HSN filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, is the company's second-largest shareholder, with nearly 3.1 million shares. Those shares are worth $124.6 million. (Liberty Interactive is HSN's biggest shareholder, with a 38% stake in the company before the deal.)

A small group of HSN executives and board members also hold a significant number shares in the company. Judy Schmeling, president of HSN's Cornerstone Brand and one of three senior leaders to run the company after Grossman left, has 51,681 shares, worth about $2.1 million. Bill Brand, another member of the office of the CEO, had 47,786 shares, worth about $1.9 million.

Outside HSN, there's another big winner: Cable TV mogul John Malone, who owns Liberty Interactive, Liberty Media and a host of other entities, from ranches in Colorado to the Atlanta Braves. Malone, No. 61 on the Forbes 400 list of the richest Americans, is worth an estimated $7.6 billion, the magazine reports. Now he owns the two largest home shopping networks in the industry.


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