CBS has solidified its online distribution strategy announcing today the creation of the CBS Interactive Audience Network.
"Today marks an important step in our strategy to distribute content broadly across the online interactive landscape on an open, non-exclusive basis," CBS President and CEO Leslie Moonves said in a statement.
The new distribution network will provide ad-supported free content to consumers on a variety of Internet sites. Advertising revenue will be shared between CBS and its new partners which include AOL, Microsoft, CNET, Comcast, Joost, Bebo, Brightcove, Netvibes, Sling Media and Veoh. The company already has existing deals Yahoo!, Apple and Amazon which will continue.
The creation of the CBS Interactive Audience Network mirrors the company's mobile strategy of getting its content on as many platforms as possible . A rotating list of clips and full length episodes of CBS properties, ranging from CSI and David Letterman to Showtime Championship Boxing and CSTV content, will be available on the Network over limited time frames. Some content will also be available internationally.
Last month NBC and News Corp. announced a similar pervasive distribution strategy with the additional feature of a centralized Website. CBS already has a video portal, Innertube, but is reportedly in talks to have its content distributed on the new network from NBC and News as well.
CBS will begin selling advertising on the network in the coming weeks, and plans to include it in its upfront.
The network will be managed on the back-end by Akamai Technologies, which recently launched a new video content delivery system .