Turner board set to talk about CBS, other deals

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Turner Broadcasting System's board Monday will hold a special telephone conference call to discuss several deals that could determine the future of Turner, CBS and a number of other media companies. The Turner board is expected to vote on whether Turner should make a stock swap deal to acquire King World Productions, valued at $1.6 billion, as a step toward raising capital to buy out Time Warner's 18% stake in Turner. That move, in turn, would free Turner to pursue other mergers, including a bid for CBS. Turner also has been in talks with Microsoft Corp. about making a strategic investment in Turner to help it make a run for CBS, if the Time Warner obstacle is removed. On Wall Street, CBS shares were up 50¢ at $81 a share in early trading Aug. 18, after the day before closing above the agreed buyout price of $81 a share for the first time since CBS and Westinghouse Electric Corp. announced their $5.4 billion deal.

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