Barry Diller has finally lost it. The media mogul's eclectic collection of properties known as IAC/InterActiveCorp
The more reasonable version of me would realize that the deeper I dig into the numbers behind this morning's report, the brighter Diller becomes. Backing out a series of asset sale gains from last year's production, and adjusting this year's bottom-line showing to reflect a series of one-time line items, IAC saw its adjusted earnings per share climb to $0.32 a share in the June quarter, from $0.28 a share a year ago.
IAC's top line grew by 18% during the period, mostly due to its successful relaunch of Ask.com and strength in service revenues through subsidiaries like Ticketmaster, LendingTree, and online dating specialist Match.com.
Yes, Diller has gathered an odd mix of retail and service properties over the years. IAC also owns Home Shopping Network, CitySearch, and the ServiceMagic lead-referral service.
IAC is a prime candidate to follow Viacom
Diller's acquisitive appetite will probably never be satisfied. Earlier this year, the company acquired Shoebuy.com. However, IAC has also been putting its meaty cash balance to good use by buying back its own shares. Even if IAC's shares have weathered the storm better than many interactive conglomerates -- they're only trading marginally lower than they were a year ago -- it's good to see Diller put his company's money where its mouth is.
IAC's solid performance is a welcome find, even to a superficial simpleton like me.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this story, though he has been a frequent freelance contributor to IAC's CitySearch.The Fool has a disclosure policy. Rick is also part of theRule Breakersnewsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.