Early Briefing: CircuitBlock CityBuster?


Blockbuster said it has made a bid to pay up to $1.35 billion for Circuit City, which questioned whether the deal could be financed. (By David Duprey -- Associated Press)

* Blockbuster said it has made an unsolicited offer to buy the struggling Circuit City for more than $1 billion and create a new type of store that would merge multimedia content and consumer electronics.

Circuit City, an electronics retail chain based in Richmond, said it would consider the proposal but questioned whether Blockbuster would be able to finance the deal. The movie-rental company has offered to pay $6 to $8 per share in cash, which would total as much as $1.35 billion and roughly double Blockbuster's market value of about $554 million. Blockbuster said it would raise the money for the deal through borrowing and issuing additional stock.

* TeleCommunication Systems said it put aside a patent-infringement dispute with Research In Motion, the maker of the BlackBerry e-mail device, while the two sides try to negotiate a settlement. TCS, based in Annapolis, retains an option to revive the case if the companies cannot reach a resolution by June 12.

* A Media General board nominee backed by dissident investor Harbinger Capital Partners won the support of Glass Lewis, a proxy advisory firm, which recommended that investors vote for J. Daniel Sullivan at the April 24 shareholder meeting. Glass Lewis has criticized Media General, a Richmond company that owns 25 daily newspapers and 23 TV stations, over share performance and executive pay. Its stock has fallen 60 percent in the past year.

* AOL, a Time Warner Web unit, will sell and manage Internet ads for Verizon. AOL's Platform A sales network will handle display and video ads for the second-biggest U.S. phone company, said AOL, which has offices in Reston. Under the agreement, AOL will be the only company that can guarantee Verizon ads to Web sites.

* VSE said it bought G&B Solutions, a technology and management consultant, for $19.5 million in cash and a payment of up to $4.2 million in the next three years if certain financial goals are met. Alexandria-based VSE provides engineering, logistics, technology and management services to U.S. government customers.

By Dan Beyers  |  April 15, 2008; 7:33 AM ET
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