IB Partners in Peril?


If some of the rumblings out there are to be believed, station Web partner Internet Broadcasting (IB) might have to scramble to stay in growth mode. More than one trusted source says NBC is evaluating its partnership with IB, with one option being bringing the Web operations for its O&Os in-house. The NBC-owned stations, including WNBC New York and WCAU Philadelphia, are under new management–NBC vet John Wallace took them over last month.

"They want to own their own stuff," says a source.

The Cox stations are also said to be rethinking their relationship with IB. 

IB counts NBC, Cox, Hearst-Argyle and CNN, among other huge media players, as "broadcast partners," according to its Website. 

Further complicating the picture, we hear rival World Now is close to announcing a substantial infusion of capital. 

An IB spokesperson said "Cox and NBC remain valued customers."

Sounds like new IB boss David Lebow, formerly E.V.P./G.M. at AOL, has some busy days ahead.