NEW YORK – U.S. media group Comcast, parent of NBC, bought Microsoft’s 50% stake in MSNBC.com for about $300 million and assuming full control of the news website, said the New York Times, citing information from people who had first-hand knowledge of the agreement between the giant software manufacture and the leading TV and cable service provider.
MSNBC.com was renamed NBCNews.com, with users automatically redirected to the new website instead of the usual format they have become accustomed to over the years.
NBC and Microsoft joined forces in 1996 to create a cable news channel and an online news operation that merged the power of TV signal with Internet technology – a totally innovative concept that was emerging at that time.
News of a possible buyout surfaced for the first time in May, following Comcast’s inherent decision to have full control of the popular news site.
“MSNBC TV will launch a new digital channel in 2013 as a brand extension,” said the chief editor of MSNBC.COM in a letter published on the MSNBC website.
Representatives for both Comcast and Microsoft could not immediately be reached by Reuters for comments on the buyout, being after business hours in America at the time of publishing.