Glum chums find that's entertainment
with Alex Lo
It should have been a joyous event at last month's Monte Carlo Television Festival when the two old friends met, but both Hong Kong media guru Robert Chua and CNN founder Ted Turner (both pictured left) were wallowing in sorrow like two mothers who had just lost their children.
In May, the US mogul divested half of his remaining shares in AOL Time Warner, which owns the news network that he helped build into the leading global news provider in the 1990s.
Turner has reportedly become disenchanted with the media giant, which has taken over his news network and generally ignored his advice as a board member.
'We felt sorry for each other. I know how Turner felt. I felt the same way. AOL Time Warner doesn't know how to run my company either,' Chua told Lo Down when he returned to Hong Kong this week.
Chua said he shared a similar fate with Turner when he sold his Chinese Entertainment Television Broadcast (CETV) to AOL Time Warner in 2000.
Now Warner is selling its controlling stake in CETV to Tom.com, controlled by tycoon Li Ka-shing. This meant Chua will lose most of his remaining shares in the TV company he founded. But he put on a brave face. 'Tom.com has a more local perspective. They know how to run CETV better,' he said.