News Corp.-Yahoo May Boost Web Video

Feb 19, 2008  •  Post A Comment

Microsoft may be intent on gaining control of Yahoo through a proxy battle, but News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch is still waiting in the wings.
While either combination probably would accelerate the growth of Web video, the prospect of a marriage between Yahoo and News Corp. could be a bigger boon for the medium, broadband analysts said.
That’s because a Yahoo-News Corp. tie-up would bring News Corp.’s MySpace into the equation, creating a stronger pair, said Kaan Yigit, analyst with Solutions Research Group.
“Yahoo properties edge even Google in monthly traffic, and that, combined with the leading social media brand and its video-driven entertainment strategy would be a potent combination,” he said.
Also, News Corp. has been betting heavily on Web video via its efforts on MySpace and by repurposing its Fox shows on the Hulu site, jointly owned by News Corp. and NBC Universal.
“A deal with Yahoo would no doubt give them greater flexibility online, leveraging News Corp. video assets across a wider number of consumer touchpoints, not just in the U.S. but worldwide,” said T.S. Kelly, senior VP and director of research and insight at Media Contacts, a division of Havas.
MySpace also could be strengthened with Yahoo’s search engine and Yahoo’s ad support.
“It’s nice to have two or more suitors. My guess is the one with the deepest pockets wins,” said Bruce Leichtman, president of Leichtman Research Group.
YouTube was the top-ranked online video destination, as measured by streams served, in December when it delivered 2.6 billion video streams, according to Nielsen Online. Yahoo delivered 372 million streams and Fox Interactive Media, which primarily includes MySpace, served up 364 million video streams that month. MSN Video, meanwhile, delivered 112 million streams in December.
(Editor: Baumann)

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