Lowell "Bud" Paxson, HSN Co-Founder, Dies at 80

Lowell "Bud" Powell - P 2015
AP Photo/Ed Bailey

Paxson also launched PAX TV, a hub for family-friendly programming

Lowell "Bud" Paxson, a radio and TV entrepreneur who helped popularize home shopping, has died. He was 80.

Paxson, creator of the Home Shopping Network and PAX TV, died Jan. 9, the National Association of Broadcasters announced.

See more Hollywood's Notable Deaths of 2014

"Broadcasters have lost a friend and a legend in the passing of Bud Paxson, who was a tenacious advocate for over-the-air radio and televsion," NAB president Gordon Smith said.

Paxson began his career as an owner of N.Y.-based WACK Radio. In 1982, he and business partner Roy Speer co-founded a Florida cable channel that sold products to viewers in the state. The channel, which launched nationwide in 1985, was first called the Home Shopping Club and later became the Home Shopping Network. It now goes by HSN, which Barry Diller purchased in 1996.

Read more Disney Strikes Multi-Film Partnership With HSN

Paxson went on to start Paxson Communications Corporation, now known as Ion Media Networks. He acquired various radio and TV stations, later selling the radio outlets and using the TV stations to launch PAX TV, a network for family-friendly shows.

HSN's Twitter page posted a message Saturday expressing grief at Paxson's passing. "We are deeply saddened by the death of HSN founder Lowell 'Bud' Paxson — a true retail pioneer," the tweet read. "Our thoughts and prayers are with his family."

The mogul, who was outspoken about his evangelical Christian faith, is survived by wife Marla; children Todd, Devon, Julie and Nicole; daughter-in-law Dorian; and several grandchildren.

Email: Ryan.Gajewski@pgmedia.org
Twitter: @_RyanGajewski