BermanBraun is in the advanced stages of shopping a new mom-targeted content site to the three major Web portals—AOL, MSN and Yahoo—while also quietly developing plans to introduce a Web property centered on science content, according to multiple sources.
Details are few on what exactly the mom-oriented site will entail, but BermanBraun is said to be actively hiring for the project. The company, which has its hands on multiple TV series, Web ventures and feature films, is said to have reached out to major magazine publishers like Hearst and Rodale to provide editorial content for the new mom site.
A rep for BermanBraun denied the moms site was attached to AOL, but according to a source all three portals are in the mix, though negotiations have been described as fluid. AOL and BermanBraun are expected to roll out three new content sites in the coming weeks focused on pets, men, and the weather.
BermanBraun is already a major partner with MSN, having launched the successful celebrity site Wonderwall, as well as the women's digital magazine Glo, which features content produced by Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S.
Hachette's parent company Hearst and MSN are currently partners on the food site Delish (which does not involve BermanBraun). In 2010 BermanBraun also introduced Bltwy, a political answer to Wonderwall produced in conjunction with MSNBC.com (Bltwy eventually morphed into Powerwall).
But in the case of the new moms property, BermanBraun faces a complicated portal landscape, as well as a crowded sector. Reps from AOL, Yahoo and MSN declined to comment. AOL has its own Huffington Post Moms channel; but its soon-to-be-lanched BermanBraun sites are unlikely to be HuffPo branded, making a standalone mom-centric site a possibility. Yahoo, which does carry some parenting content from partners such as Babble, would seem to have some room in its portfolio. But such a partnership would yield an eye-opening scenario, as it would place BermanBraun founder Lloyd Braun back in business with the company that ousted him in 2006 after a memorable run at the helm of Yahoo's media group.
MSN would seem to make the most sense, except for the fact that the site pulls in a sizable amount of lifestyle and family content from The Today Show and NBC News.
While the traffic power of any portal shouldn't be ignored, this new mom-targeted site won't have it easy, as this demographic is well represented on the Web. There are category giants like J&J's BabyCenter and CafeMom (which Yahoo apparently considered buying at one point). Disney recently made a renewed commitment to this sector as well, with last year's acquisition of Babble Media and the recent launch of Disney Baby. And of course, there are countless mommy blog and mom-centric video series scattered across the Web.
Aside from the mom project, details are few on the proposed BermanBraun science site. According to a source, that project is at an earlier stage than is the mom-centric venture.