Peacock Equity Fund, the strategic venture fund which is part of NBC Universal (NYSE: GE), has now upped it fund size from an initial $250 million to $1 billion, according to NBCU digital media VP Jessica Schell, speaking at Harvard Business School’s Entertainment & Media conference today. The fund, launched a year ago, has quickly made a number of substantial investment in the digital media sector, including online ad network Adify, health search engine Healthline, gaming ad firm IGA,
blog network Popsugar and video service WorldWideBiggies (these are direct NBCU investments, the company tells me, not the fund’s). So expect lots more investment from the fund, certainly as NBCU’s pace of digital M&A has slowed down.
Also speaking at Harvard conference, NBCU CEO Jeff Zucker said the revenues in online video distribution aren’t there yet. “The economics around these digital properties are not yet fully formed — that’s five years away…We can’t trade today’s analog dollars for digital pennies.” Somewhat of a party line, of course, in light of the recently ended writers strike. On the company’s tussle with Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) iTunes, Zucker conceded that the other distribution channels, including Amazon.com’s (NSDQ: AMZN) Unbox service, haven’t been as successful as iTunes.