Another power shift at NBC: Debi Fine, head of iVillage, is moving to the TV side as president of digital strategy. She’ll focus on cable and report to Jeff Gaspin, president and COO of the NBC Universal Television Group.
Good move for Fine, who joined NBC after stints at Avon and the Limited. She considered leaving the GE-owned entertainment unit as iVillage has floundered following its 2006 acquisition by NBC for some $600 million. Fine made iVillage profitable but the business never met NBC’s expectations. The poor performance was partly beyond Fine’s control. Example: the NBC Station Group tried to translate the iVillage brand into a TV show to air on NBC stations. The result was a visible failure in eight metro markets, including New York City. Not good for brand building.
Now iVillage is part of the Women at NBC unit headed by Lauren Zalaznick, a rising star at the company. Watch for her to name a new head of iVillage soon. It’ll likely be an outsider.