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NBCUniversal invests $200 million in Vox Media

NBCUniversal invests $200 million in Vox Media
NBCUniversal made its investment, in part, to glean greater insights into how to engage this elusive young audience. (Hector Mata / AFP/Getty Images)

NBCUniversal has made $200-million equity investment in digital publisher Vox Media, the companies announced Wednesday.

"Vox Media has a great portfolio of premium digital brands that deeply engage broad audiences," Steve Burke, chief executive of NBCUniversal, said in a statement announcing the arrangement.

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The Comcast-owned media company already had a small interest in Vox, which has made significant inroads reaching younger consumers through such brands as SB Nation, the Verge, Vox.com, Eater, Racked and Curbed.

Traditional media companies, including TV broadcasters, are increasingly motivated to connect with the under-35 crowd that advertisers pay a premium to reach. NBCUniversal made its investment, in part, to glean greater insights into how to engage this elusive young audience.

The investment gives NBCUniversal a minority stake in Vox.

NBCUniversal declined to say what percentage of the publisher it now owns. Vox earlier this year acquired the tech industry website Re/code. NBCUniversal also had a small stake in Re/code.

"NBCUniversal's valuable family of properties align especially well with Vox Media's authoritative, voice-driven brands which span sports, tech, news, fashion, food, and more," Jim Bankoff, chief executive of Vox Media, said in the statement.

NBCUniversal's investment values Vox at about $850 million, according to Re/code.

NBCUniversal is in talks to invest in another fast-growing digital news operation, Buzzfeed News. However, that deal has not been finalized.

It has been reported that NBCUniversal plans to invest $200 million to $250 million in Buzzfeed.

Twitter: @MegJamesLAT

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