Brian Roberts began tagging along with his father on Saturdays to the family cable-television business, Comcast Inc., when he was 8, almost 32 years ago. But he didn't fully grasp cable's powerful appeal until many years later when his dad, Ralph, packed him off to help run the Comcast system in Flint, Mich.
HERE'S A TALE OF ONE RECORD label. When Def Jam was founded 15 years ago, rap was an inventive new sound from black urban America. To the captains of the music industry, it was an inner-city fad with limited appeal--but just in case, they would keep an eye on it by buying chunks of the brassy production house.
WHEN PEPSI RETURNED TO POST-partheid South Africa, it arrived pop diva Whitney Houston. late 1994, Pepsi cosponsored her charity tour. But the bigger news, which Pepsi Co gleefully trumpeted, was that Houston was a new ally in its global cola wars with Coca-Cola; she had invested in a new venture to reintroduce Pepsi to South Africa.
IN BUSINESS, THE BEAT tends to go on no matter what. Consider the music industry, especially the increasingly bloody rap subgenre known as gangsta. When superstar Tupac Shakur was killed in September, Arista Records was zeroing in on a $75 million joint-venture deal with Sean (Puffy) Combs, the producing whiz behind New York-based Bad Boy Entertainment.
EVEN JOHN LE CARRE MIGHT BE hard pressed to craft such an exquisite caper as the one now ensnarling Rupert Murdoch. At dawn two Sundays ago, in a pocket of Jerusalem packed with high-tech companies, a small army of Israeli tax agents stormed a remote but pivotal outpost of the media baron's global empire.
WAITING TO EXHALE," THE RECENT hit film about the love trials of four middle-class black women, bore all the marks of Hollywood. The movie, a Christmas release that opened on 1,253 screens nationwide, was based on a hot novelist's best seller and featured a star-studded cast (Whitney Houston and Angela Bassett) and a marvelous soundtrack (produced by hitmaker Babyface).