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Summary:

Earlier in May we reported that NBCU (NYSE: GE) and News Corp. (NYSE: NWS) were looking for $100 million in exchange for 10 percent of equit…

Earlier in May we reported that NBCU (NYSE: GE) and News Corp. (NYSE: NWS) were looking for $100 million in exchange for 10 percent of equity in their new video JV for a pre-launch valuation of $1 billion. Now, according to the NYT, they have their deal: $100 million for 10 percent from Providence Equity Partners. Let’s see, first, new CEO Jason Kilar, then a major investment — maybe a name will be next.

Rafat adds: We have confirmed the investment from a senior source close to the companies. The money’s still coming in, and papers are being signed. Also, one of the intentions of the funding is to give an indication that the JV is serious about building this as a standalone business…though the name is still being decided, the team with the new CEO has moved into an office in Westside Media Center on the edge of Santa Monica here (the old eToys building, for those keeping track of ironies). The source said that more funding is possible, and as things progress, the standalone company could be spun off in an IPO. Of course, the first step first: Expect a launch sometime this fall.

  1. "Sometime this Fall."? I thought it was supposed to be September?

    No site, no traffic, no revenue and a $1 billion valuation. It will be an interesting launch. Someone should do a video blog about the insider story.

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  2. staci, still 'bemused'?

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  3. I got an idea – build a product first. People inside indicate that the actual service will be DOA.

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  4. Staci D. Kramer Thursday, August 9, 2007

    Frank, they do have a few things other startups lack: significant programming, key distribution agreements and advertisers. I'm not saying it's worth $1 billion but valuations have been built on far less. As for launch, the push is for September but when pressed last month Peter Chernin said the launch will come when the service is ready and that “might happen, might not happen” in September: “We don’t want to have the date first and back into it.”

    Invitedmedia, constantly.

    Devin, not what I'm hearing from inside. We are talking about multiple products, though, not just one: the distributed network and NewSite, the JV's own portal.

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  5. one thing is for certain- this topic seems to attract more comments than most.

    no offense, staci, but did you at one time work for nbc or any of these parties? you seem like you carry their water. no offense, just my opinion.

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  6. They will be under a lot of scrutiny when they launch, so that is smart to wait until the service is ready. I hope they spend a good amount of time on the user experience, including performance. Speaking of which, on those advertisers – are they thinking pre-roll?

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  7. Staci D. Kramer Thursday, August 9, 2007

    Invitedmedia — I'm not sure how that can be said without my taking offense but no, I haven't. I also haven't worked for News Corp. If I had a conflict like that it would be disclosed — as you must have seen here since you appear to be a frequent reader. My focus, always, is on the story and providing you (whoever you are) and all of our readers with the best information available, not who looks good or bad as a result of what I write or what we publish overall.

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  8. fair enough. and as i said, no offense.

    i pose the question because this looks like something out of providence's deal size; their own website says they do deals in the "$250M to $2.5B" range.

    there's also other criteria there that would be of interest to know how and whether it applies to 'new site'.

    keep their tootsies to the fire!

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