Rainbow buys into Salon

Media Holdings unit eyes TV series, synergy

Cablevision Systems Corp.’s Rainbow Media Holdings unit announced Monday that it will acquire a 10% stake in Salon.com in exchange for advertising and promotion valued at $11.8 million.

Under a 10-year strategic equity agreement, Salon.com will develop a weekly television series expected to launch in 2000 on Rainbow’s Bravo network. David Talbot, Salon.com’s founder, chairman and editor-in-chief, will oversee the development of Salon.com’s television programming, working with Rainbow execs, as well as Salon.com board members Norman Lear and former CBS president Jim Rosenfield.

The two companies plan joint advertising sales on the new Bravo series, as well as on each other’s Internet properties. The goal of the deal is “to share content and to provide consistent demographics to media buyers,” said Josh Sapan, president and CEO of Rainbow Media Holdings, Inc.

Salon.com and Bravo Networks will exchange content and cross promote throughout their web properties. Salon.com will also provide its reporters to Rainbow’s MetroChannels, three channels dedicated to the New York Tri-State area.

Salon.com closed Monday at 7 1/4, up 3/8. Cablevision Systems Corp. closed at 75 11/16, up 1 3/8.

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