Msnbc.com portal now known as nbcnews.com immediately after NBCUniversal takes full ownership of online news network as Microsoft agrees to dissolve 16-year joint venture.
NBC News has announced today that they have acquired 100 percent share of msnbc.com and its digital networks from Microsoft. Many details of the arrangement remain to be worked out, and financial terms weren’t disclosed.
But NBC News President Steve Capus said the site — one of the news industry’s earliest and most successful online operations — would become part of NBC News Digital, a new division led by Vivian Schiller, the former president and chief executive of National Public Radio. Schiller joined NBC News as chief digital officer last year.
“Some really talented journalists have passed through the doorway of msnbc.com and taken us to the point where we have something that is an outstanding set of properties, and we value them to such a degree that we decided that we wanted to own them outright,” she said. Roughly 300 employees will remain employed by NBC.
In the short term, msnbc.com will reflect the homepage of NBCNews.com. Eventually, it will become the address of MSNBC TV, giving MSNBC TV its own dedicated address and ending an arrangement under which the news site shared the MSNBC name with an increasingly commentary-driven channel.
Charlie Tillinghast, the site’s president and publisher, said NBC News would benefit from “proper brand alignment between the TV properties and their Web counterparts — NBC News and NBCNews.com, MSNBC cable and msnbc.com and TODAY show and TODAY.com.”
“We’ve had great success combining TV, desktop, mobile and iTV (Internet TV) where the value is greater than the sum of the parts,” he said. “That requires both the brand alignment and product integration that is possible only with a wholly owned unit.”
MSNBC News was visited by 49.9 million people in June, according to figures from the online analytics company comScore. For Microsoft, moving on “allows us to go out and innovate,” said Bob Visse, general manager of MSN.com.