The Huffington Post — the AOL news-aggregation site that has reportedly been shopped to multiple buyers — is launching online-video network Outspeak aimed at millennial audiences in partnership with RTL Group’s BroadbandTV, a large YouTube multichannel network.
Outspeak, launching at outspeak.tv and on YouTube, will combine BBTV’s 4.5 billion monthly views and Huffington Post’s 214 million monthly unique visitors. The companies said select creators will have the opportunity to develop their channels into original content series on Outspeak.
“With the launch of Outspeak, we’re thrilled at the opportunity to collaborate with emerging talent and creators to further build our presence on YouTube,” said Arianna Huffington, co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post. “It’s another expression of our doubling-down on video.”
Ms. Huffington declined to comment on reports that AOL has had discussions with potential buyers for HuffPo. Verizon last month announced a deal to acquire AOL for $4.4 billion. Following that announcement, AOL claimed it had no plans to divest Huffington Post or any of its content brands, but according to several reports the news unit has been on the block for some time.
“Our combined efforts to put news in the hands of millennials has the potential to change news as we know it,” said Shahrzad Rafati, BroadbandTV’s founder and CEO.
BroadbandTV’s other brands include gaming network TGN, hip-hop music network Opposition, electronic-dance music network WIMSIC and HooplaKidz, a kids and family network. The company operates a network of some 32,000 content creators and a library of more than 11 million video assets.
Outspeak’s launch as a new brand is similar to the strategy used by cable TV programmers in introducing multiple networks, as well as that employed by Vice Media, which has debuted brands under the broader Vice umbrella, Rafati said. “We are specifically looking at creators with a passion in politics or tech,” she said.
HuffPost, for its part, has been upping its video business in recent months. Over the past three years, the site’s HuffPost Live has surpassed 2.3 billion video views. The long-term goal, Ms. Huffington said, is for the site to generate 50% of its traffic from video.
Watch the Outspeak announcement sizzle-reel: