Months in the making, the official takeover of NBC Universal by Comcast is effective Friday. General Electric is now a minority shareholder and is expected to sell the remainder of its stake over the next few years.
Comcast picked up lots of new shareholders as the deal closed. Every NBC Universal employee got 25 shares of Comcast stock (value: about $575) as part of a welcome to the company package.
Employees also got a copy of “The Big Idea Book” to grace their coffee tables so their friends, neighbors and relatives can see what working for Comcast is all about.
Despite the East Coast snow storm, new NBCU CEO Steve Burke met Thursday with staffers in New York along with Comcast founder Ralph Roberts in a townhall session hosted by NBC News anchor Brian Williams. The better weather was with Comcast President Brian Roberts, who met with LA employees as Ryan Seacrest hosted. Why a Fox star? Seacrest also has a deal with Comcast’s E! network.
Unveiled at the meetings was a new logo, with a single word – “NBCUniversal” – in white on a purple background. No Peacock, although the colorful bird will still be used by the NBC Network. (The new logo was immediately ridiculed across the Internet for being exceedingly boring and lacking in any creativity.)
Past RBR-TVBR coverage:
Steve Burke names his NBCU leadership team (minus subsequent exit of Angela Bromstad)
RBR-TVBR observation: As usual, the closing carried much less drama than the rumors – over a year ago – which became a deal, then more rumors over who would stay and who would go. Now the new team has to get to work building the business – which is already going in the right direction, based on the last earnings report from the former stewards at GE.