Blow for Google as NBC Universal ends cable channels ad sales deal

The all-conquering Google (it’s currently investigating the market for driverless cars and funding a wind farm off the East Coast of the USA among other ventures) has suffered a blow to one of its more mundane activities, selling unsold (by NBC) airtime on some of NBC Universal’s smaller cable channels.

Google had a deal to shift surplus inventory on the Chiller, MSNBC, Oxygen, Sleuth and Syfy channels but that’s now been quietly ended by NBC although it stresses it’s still working with Google. Its CNBC business channel is one of the first offerings on new internet-wired Google TV.

But Google has been trying hard to persuade mainstream media owners that its global-leading collection of eyeballs can boost their revenues and cut their costs. So far there’s little evidence that it has managed to do both. There’s also the issue that such media owners still prefer to deal directly with advertisers and agencies, perhaps fearful of other new wheezes Google might be selling to them.

Google still has deals with DirecTV and Bloomberg among others but NBC’s decision is a blow to its wider advertising ambitions.

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