PennWell starts online media venture

July 1, 1997

PennWell starts online media venture

Stephen M. Hardy

PennWell Publishing Co., Tulsa, OK, has extended its stake in the World Wide Web with the acquisition of a majority interest in the Broadband Telephony Buyers` Guide (www.broadband-guide.com) and the subsequent launch of PennWell Media Online llc, Nashua, NH. The new venture will combine the Web resources and expertise resident in the Broadband Telephony Buyers` Guide with the content, infrastructure, and market recognition of PennWell Publishing`s Advanced Technology Division (atd) in Nashua. The atd publishes Lightwave, among other periodicals.

Dave Janoff, vice president and group publisher of the Communications and Optoelectronics Group within PennWell`s atd, will serve as chief executive of Penn Well Media Online. Ellen Caravello, president and founder of the company behind the Broadband Telephony Buyers` Guide, will serve as chief operating officer of the new firm.

PennWell Media Online will develop a series of Web sites that combine the content and lead-generation strategies of the Broadband Telephony Buyers` Guide with material and resources from the atd`s Web sites and printed publications. The result will be more than 6000 pages of telecommunications-related content available around the clock.

The first of these sites, The Broadband Guide, will debut this month. It will host directories that detail the activities of more than 1500 companies that produce broadband communications equipment and services. The site will include product information, catalogs, white papers, and other information resources, as well as direct access to technology experts. It also will host the Web presence of Lightwave and its sister publications, Cabling Installation & Maintenance and Wireless Integration. A powerful search engine will provide access to data from all corners of the site.

Company officials have ambitious plans for the site. "PennWell Media Online will become a full-fledged media company with capabilities for live events over the Internet," says Janoff. "We will deliver the spectrum of media applications to serve the telecom market."

These applications will appear on The Broadband Guide in the form of live multimedia programs. The offerings will include interviews with industry leaders, on-site coverage of trade shows and other media events, and presentations by atd editorial staff members. Plans call for interactive multimedia programs that would allow site visitors to participate directly in such events as online press conferences.

Users can reach The Broadband Guide via www.broadband-guide.com, as well as through the Web addresses of Lightwave (www.light-wave.com) and Cabling Installation & Maintenance (www.cable-install.com).

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