Lachlan Murdoch's plan to launch his own media empire by taking Australia's Consolidated Media Holdings private with his long-time friend and onetime business partner James Packer has come undone. The $3.2-billion deal reportedly began to unravel after th e private equity firm Providence Equity Partners said it was not prepared to pay the original price for Consolidated after the company's shares fell on the Sydney Stock Exchange. Consolidated Media's holdings include stakes in the Nine Network and the pay TV operator Foxtel. Murdoch said early today that his investment company, Illyria, was "not in a position to proceed with the indicative proposal due to material changes in the overall transaction terms." The collapse of the deal was viewed as a stunning setback for the younger Murdoch, who in 2005 left News Corp, his father's media empire, to return to Australia, start his own business, and "be my own man."