Digest: CBS Corp. buying back 47 mil shares


CBS Corp. said Tuesday that it is buying back about 47 million shares of its Class B stock for about $1.4 billion in an accelerated repurchase deal. The buyback is part of a $1.5 billion stock-repurchase program announced Feb. 27. CBS Class B shares closed up 4.5% at $30.94. CBS has said its primary way of returning value to shareholders will be through dividends.

News Corp. boost
Merrill Lynch analyst Jessica Reif Cohen boosted her price target on News Corp. from $27 to $30 and lifted her earnings estimates Tuesday driven by increased expectations for the Fox Interactive Media unit. "We view the recent macro-driven pullback in the stock as an extremely attractive entry point," she said. Reif Cohen now projects FIM will generate nearly $1 billion in revenue and more than $200 million in operating income in fiscal-year 2008, boosting her previous earnings-per-share estimate by 3 cents. A share buyback from Liberty Media will add 9 cents a share in earnings, she said.

Activision buy
Activision Inc. said Tuesday that it is buying DemonWare, a Dublin, Ireland-based maker of network middleware for console and PC games. It did not disclose financial details. Activision said the acquisition will allow it to develop online games more efficiently. It has used DemonWare's technology since 2005, most recently in its "Call of Duty 3" game.

Intertainment loss
COLOGNE, Germany -- German rights group Intertainment, which only emerged from bankruptcy protection late last year, lost €2.8 million ($3.7 million) in the period of January-September 2006, even as revenue crept from €1 million to €1.4 million ($1.8 million). Intertainment and new parent Kinowelt cited the chronically weak dollar and the insolvency proceedings.