NBC reportedly shutting down Breaking News unit due to revenue woes

NBC News is reportedly shutting down its Breaking News alert service by the end of December, after failing to generate sufficient profit for the group.

The announcement came last Thursday as Nick Ascheim, head of the NBC News Digital Network wrote  a memo informing employees on the reason of the closure, according to CNN Money.

“Unfortunately, despite its consumer appeal, Breaking News has not been able to generate enough revenue to sustain itself,” said Ascheim. The platforms that Breaking News used to disseminate articles included a website, mobile app, as well as a Twitter handle, @breakingnews of more than 9.4 million followers.

General manager and co-founder of Breaking News, Cory Bergman also broke the news on the same day via a series of tweets, adding that “the (Breaking News) model doesn’t fit with advertising, and despite a surge of interest in our premium data, the money has run out.”

Bergman and his team of dozen or so journalists, along with technologists who work in Seattle, New York, London and Los Angeles – are expected to remain with the company until late January. Several media outlets also reported that the NBC Digital spokeswoman Emily Passer said, the network will try to find jobs for those affected elsewhere within the company.

Breaking News’ Twitter account @breakingnews was launched by Michael Van Poppel in 2007, before the Msnbc Interactive Network took over the handle in a deal with Van Poppel’s BNO News in 2009. Over the next few years, a small team inside Msnbc Interactive expanded real-time coverage to, mobile apps and new social channels. The team grew into a standalone startup called Breaking News, which was part of NBC’s acquisition of Msnbc Interactive in 2012.

At present, Breaking News remains part of the NBC News Digital Network, according to its official website.


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