Barry Diller takes shots at VCs, startup valuations

Media mogul and IAC chairman Barry Diller had some choice words for venture capitalists when he took the stage at WSJ D.Live in Laguna Beach on Tuesday.

“These valuations don’t bear reality,” said Diller, speaking about the high multiples that some startups are generating. “They’re truly made up.”

He quipped that it’s the “absence of dealing with multiplication, addition, division.” Diller considers many of the tech investments to be “wildly speculative.”

He also had concerns about the overall venture capital model, which he described as “not a very good process.” Diller particularly dislikes the pressure that VCs put on entrepreneurs to do IPOs. “There’s no reason to go public unless you need capital,” he believes.

Yet Diller has plenty of experience overseeing public companies. He reflected on the decision to separate IAC and Match into two separate businesses. “Companies that have multiple and disparate operating divisions are really suboptimal.”

He also weighed in on Harvey Weinstein, the Oscar-winning Hollywood producer who got pushed out of the company he founded, following widespread allegations of sexual harassment.

“He’s not going to be known for the good movies. He’s not going to be known for anything other than this.”