Moguls head to deal-making summer camp in Sun Valley

A sign for Sun Valley Resort hangs outside before the Allen and Co. annual conference on July 8, 2012 in Sun Valley, Idaho.

It’s that time of year again, when media moguls, tech execs, and business titans descend in droves upon Sun Valley, Idaho. That’s where the investment bank Allen & Co. hosts its annual conference, starting today.

On the guest list: Mark Zuckerberg, Rupert Murdoch, Bill Gates, and plenty of other powerhouses. Together they’ll fish, play golf, and maybe talk deals. Sun Valley’s has been the start of some big ones: Comcast and NBCUniversal; Disney and Capital Cities/ABC.

And this year? Robert Tillis, who runs the boutique investment firm Inner Circle Sports, says IMG, the giant sports and entertainment agency, could find a buyer.

“Anytime you’re the global leader in sports, fashion and media, it’s gonna get a lot of attention,” he says. “So yes, it should be on the docket there.”

Still, the elephant in the conference hall may be John Malone, the so-called King of Cable. Media analyst Paul Sweeney of Bloomberg Industries thinks Malone is in a mood to buy.

“The expectation is that he will be an acquirer of cable systems going forward. So maybe this conference might be the launch pad for some more deals,” he says.

They could happen fast. Sweeney says when you get so many media moguls with so much power together in one place, they can get things done.

About the author

Kate Davidson is a regular contributor to Marketplace.

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