IAC, Meredith Talking Merger

IAC/InterActiveCorp (NASDAQ:IAC) is in advanced talks to acquire magazine publisher Meredith Corp (NYSE:MDP) in a deal valued at over $2.5 billion, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The deal would vastly expand IAC’s collection of online publications and bulk up IAC’s portfolio of websites which lost sheen after the spin-offs of Match Group Inc (NASDAQ:MTCH)

IAC, which billionaire Barry Diller helms, has a leg up on private equity firm Najafi in the bidding and could strike a deal with Meredith shortly.

Earlier this year, Meredith sold its broadcast portfolio of 17 television stations to Gray Television in a $2.7 billion deal to reduce its net debt and focus on allocating capital to “fast-growing digital and consumer opportunities,” Forbes reports.

The sale of the rest of the company would be an abrupt exit for Meredith, which four years ago bought Time Inc for $1.85 billion.

MDP shares traded higher by $13.08 or 29.1% at $57.97 to open for business Friday. Meantime, IAC’s shares tallied $1.44, or 1.1%, to $52.79