Thanks to Comcast’s 10-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, we now know how much NBCUniversal spent to buy back the 50% of MSNBC.com that was owned by Microsoft.
The total purchase price for Microsoft’s stake was $195 million, “net of $100 million of cash and cash equivalents held at MSNBC.com that were acquired in the transaction,” according to the SEC filing.
The deal, which was signed last July, saw NBCU take control of the site and its employees, and redirected visitors to a new site called NBCNews.com. MSNBC.com is in the process of being transformed into a site dedicated to the politics-centric cable news outlet.
It is a fascinating deal because websites tied to TV operations are rarely if ever broken out financially. The purchase price means that Microsoft and NBCU valued MSNBC.com at around ~$500 million. It is not a perfect science, but general traffic stats have MSNBC.com slightly behind CNN’s digital properties, and almost double that of Fox News Channel’s digital properties. Obviously advertising sales and revenue models can vary from company to company, but it at least gives a ballpark estimate of the value of some of these digital properties.