NEW YORK (CNNfn) - NBC announced Monday that it will take an equity stake in iVillage.com, the No. 1 women's network online.
Financial terms of the deal were not immediately available, but NBC Executive Vice President Tom Rogers noted that it would be a non-cash transaction. NBC will fund the deal via "network promotional inventory," swapping on-air advertising for an equity stake in iVillage.
NBC inked a similar "network promotional inventory" deal with internet startup TalkCity in March. Today's agreement marks NBC's first major content deal since pairing with CNET to run Snap last June.
Under the terms of the deal, NBC will assist in iVillage's promotional campaign, giving the company on-air advertising and online distribution through NBC.com and Snap.com, the free internet portal service from NBC and CNET [CNWK]. NBC will acquire a seat on the iVillage board.
NBC is hoping to translate its strong female viewership to the Internet, where women are the fastest-growing demographic. Together with Snap, iVillage will produce three resource centers on Snap.com: "Guide to Better Health," "Family Center," and "Parenting Center."
Tom Rogers, President of NBC Cable and Executive Vice President of NBC, said, "We are pleased to be partnered with iVillage, the No. 1 community for women online. Despite what began as a dominant, male-skewed medium, women now represent the fastest-growing demographic on the Internet."
"This partnership demonstrates NBC's commitment to providing our viewers with the most valuable Internet resources," he added.
The agreement is evidence of NBC's continuing efforts to broaden its audience base by implementing a multiplatform marketing strategy through broadcasting and the Internet, attempting to capture more and more viewers as the lines between computer and television become increasingly blurry.
The deal is another coup for iVillage spokeswoman and chief executive officer Candice Carpenter, who has had phenomenal success at raising cash. She recently garnered $32.5 million from a consortium of investors which included the Bank of Kuwait.
Carpenter refused comment on the prospects of bringing iVillage public, but said it is difficult to ignore the red-hot market for Internet IPOs.
The companies expect co-branded advertising to begin to appear on-air and online by the end of the year.
Shares of CNET closed down 1-3/16 to 53-1/63/8 on Monday.