In 2007 this television tycoon sold Spanish-language broadcaster Univision for $13.7 billion. Perenchio lives in Malibu, and helped finance the L.A. Lakers victory parade after last year’s NBA Championship.
In 1992, he and his partners spent US$550 million for Univision; his 16% stake is now worth $1.3 billion. In 2003, he paid US$3.5 billion (consideration for a merger: UVN issued 3.5B of stock in exchange for shares of HBC) for the Spanish-language powerhouse radio network, Hispanic Broadcasting.
Along with Bud Yorkin, he also owns the rights to the film Blade Runner, as his bond completion company took ownership of the film when it went over budget. The film was one of the first issued on DVD, but the transfer from film stock was of poor quality, and was soon deleted. For many years, Perenchio refused to allow a new DVD edition of Blade Runner, including a planned 2001 Special Edition, to be issued.
Prior to his work at Univision, he (along with Norman Lear and Bud Yorkin) presided over Tandem Productions/Embassy Television (which oversaw major television hits like Maude, All in the Family, and Diff'rent Strokes). The company sold to Coca-Cola in 1985 (who at the time was the parent of Columbia Pictures, now owned by Sony) for $485 million in Coke shares which later doubled. Sony continues to own the Tandem/ELP catalog. Perenchio was also the founder of the ONTV UHF subscription television service that existed from 1977–1985, when cable television gained enough market share to eliminate most of the pay television services.
In 1985, Perenchio acquired Loews Theaters from the Tisch family for $160 million and sold it barely over one year later for over $300 million to Tri-Star Pictures. This was the first instance of a movie studio owning movie theaters since the passage of the 1955 Paramount consent decree, which had stripped the movie companies of their theaters. In late 1990, at the invitation of his former partner Norman Lear he took over the management of Act III Communications, replacing the four founding entrepreneurs with his own team. While making no changes to Act III, they sold off the holdings in 1994/95, generating over a $500 million profit from Lear's original $65 million investment.
Perenchio's crowning achievement in business terms is perhaps his acquisition and sale of Univision Television, the dominant Spanish-language television network in the US. Perenchio originally attempted to acquire Univision in 1986, but was edged out by Hallmark at approximately $500 million. Hallmark later drowned in debt and filed for bankruptcy. In 1992, in collaboration with Mexican media mogul Emilio Azcarraga, Perenchio took over Univision for $500 million.
In 1993, Perenchio made it possible for a Spanish-language television station to position itself as the first ever foreign-language television station to outperform major English-language television networks like NBC, CBS, ABC and Fox in the ratings. Such achievement was possible after Perenchio instructed one of his young executives, Miguel Banojian, a 25-year-old news operations executive from Univision New York, to "turn around" his Los Angeles operation, one which provided more than 40% of his corporation's revenue. In 2006, Perenchio announced the sale of Univision to an investor group led by Madison Dearborn Partners for $13.5 billion.
Perenchio was also a sports promoter, and in 1973 organized The Battle of the Sexes tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs which was held in Houston at the Astrodome. It drew the largest live audience for any tennis match ever, with 30,472 attendees. . It was broadcast live on ABC in prime time and became a watershed event for Billie Jean King, women’s tennis and to some degree all of women’s sports. Perhaps his most famous promotion was the 1971 "Fight of the Century" featuring legendary heavyweight champions Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier. This event is credited with creating the market for closed circuit television broadcasts of boxing matches, precursor of today's cable pay-per-view. Perenchio guaranteed a $5m payday to the two fighters, an unheard of sum at the time.
Perenchio's mansion (when owned by the Kirkeby's) in the East Gate Bel Air section of Los Angeles was used for exterior establishing shots in the first few seasons of the situation comedy The Beverly Hillbillies.
He is also a large contributor to the Republican advocacy organization "Progress for America", having given US$4,000,000 in the 2004 election cycle and another US$5,000,000 in the 2006 election cycle. Election records show over $18 million in donations to Republican candidates, party funds and related causes as of 2006.