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NBC’s Eggs All in One Basket

Jan 6, 2008  •  Post A Comment

NBC Universal’s role as the first official broadcast partner of the International Consumer Electronics Show this week in Las Vegas “makes a statement about who we are,” said NBC News Digital Media VP Mark Lukasiewicz.
It also makes a statement about how big and diverse NBCU is as a stable of brands, all with content to offer on the many platforms displayed, unveiled and ballyhooed at the five-day annual trade show for consumer technology. The event, with some 140,000 attendees, ranks as the largest annual trade show of any kind in the U.S.
According to a blog at nbcuatces.com, an online kiosk where NBCU’s CES activities are posted for the duration of the event, this represents the first time anyone has gathered the nearly 300 brands of the sprawling, multimedia distribution company in one place.
The end result surprised even Mr. Lukasiewicz. Nearly a year after he and a core group of NBCU executives, including NBCU Integrated Media President Beth Comstock, began conversations with the Consumer Electronics Association about making NBCU’s first presentation at CES, Mr. Lukasiewicz said with understatement: “It was an interesting exercise.”
The 5,400-square-foot NBCU booth includes two stages that are TV- and streaming-equipped and offer access to 290 NBCU Web sites and a wide array of presentation tapes, interactive reels and downloadable content that can be carried away for later viewing courtesy of the 2-gigabyte flash drives the booth will supply to visitors. One of the gee-whiz elements of the booth is a sliding “iWall” that facilitates access to much of the content.
A third area will accommodate bloggers, NBCU telecasts and personnel ranging from “Today’s” Al Roker and “Nightly News’” Brian Williams to reporters filing for NBC and Telemundo O&Os.
MSNBC and “Access Hollywood” also will be represented in Las Vegas, as will CNBC, for which it is a sexy business story as well as a high-profile studio for Maria Bartiromo and shows including “Power Lunch.”
“We’ll be in the business of creating our own [live] content for large chunks of time, while people are also absorbing our content,” said Mr. Lukasiewicz, who calls the booth “broadcast central.”’
“It will be a place where we show off everything we do in content to everyone at CES and talk about how our content is on all of these platforms that CES has become about,” he said. “It’s become the show about all of the ways consumers interact with technology, and increasingly that has to do with content that’s served on that technology. So we’re there to talk about how central we are to that and all the things we have to offer in that sphere. In the same spot, we’ve built a really good facility to cover all the stories that are going on at CES.”
Mr. Lukasiewicz declined to discuss how much NBCU’s presence at CES is costing, except to acknowledge, “It is not inexpensive.”
When asked whether the big new commitment to CES signals a less enthusiastic view of the National Association of Television Program Executives international syndication bazaar, which takes place Jan. 28-31 in Las Vegas and will include a keynote address by NBCU President Jeff Zucker, the network released a statement saying: “NBC Universal is happy to take part in both CES and NATPE. Both events offer unique opportunities to expose our content to different audiences.”
However, with the growing view of content as the fuel for the consumer electronics business, “It’s important for us to plant a firm foot in this show to say NBC Universal is a company that’s forward-thinking, that is more active in all of these interactive areas than anybody else,” Mr. Lukasiewicz said. “It’s tremendously valuable to say: ‘We’re part of this.’”

One Comment

  1. I love the expression. Everyone needs to express there own opinion and feel free to hear others. Keep it up 🙂

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