Walt Disney Co. said Thursday it had taken control of Starwave Corp. and will team the Web site operator founded by Microsoft Corp. co-founder Paul Allen with ABC News to launch an online news service.
In a competitive twist for Allen, the ABCNEWS.com service would become an immediate rival to MSNBC, a joint online venture of NBC and Microsoft.
It’s another aggressive move into the Internet for the Burbank, Calif.-based Disney. The company announced Monday that it will launch a Web service for children and families called Disney’s Daily Blast.
Disney said it had bought a “significant” stake in Starwave and would run its daily operations. Financial terms were not disclosed. Starwave, a privately owned company that doesn’t disclose profits, has been praised for its creativity in designing Web pages but criticized for loose management.