NBC Readies Broadband-Portal Push

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Five months after NBC and its affiliates unveiled plans for a new co-owned broadband portal, dubbed the National Broadband Company, it appears the venture is beginning to take shape. NBC is holding a press conference Tuesday for the National Broadband Company that will include top executives from NBC and its stations as well as representatives from three outside Websites.

Execs from Razorfish, an ad agency, Forbes Magazine's Website Forbes.com and online resource guide HowStuffWorks.com will share the stage Tuesday with NBC Universal COO Randy Falco, general manager of Strategic Ventures Mike Steib, NBBC General Manager Brian Buchwald and NBC Affiliates President Marci Burdick at the press conference Tuesday morning in New York, according to an NBC media advisory.

NBBC was originally conceived as portal to showcase video from NBC and its 230 affiliates and possibly user-created content and network programming. When the co-owned venture was unveiled in April, executives stressed they might expand to other content but did not elaborate.

Given the executives mentioned in the press advisory, it appears NBBC has found its first outside content parters, although a network spokesperson would not comment on Tuesday's announcement.

On the NBBC.com Website, a placeholder page shows quick video clips of NBC shows and news content, but does not elaborate on the content except to say "Coming Soon."

Like digital weather channel NBC WeatherPlus, launched in December 2004, the new broadband channel will be co-owned by NBC and its affiliates and managed by the network.

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