The US broadcaster NBC News is launching a new venture called NBC Publishing, Digital Book World reports. A division of NBCUniversal, this new unit will focus on e-books, many of which will be enhanced with NBC’s video footage.

200px NBCNewslogo1999 NBC News is launching a Publishing arm to bring video into the e book format

Many e-books will be based on NBC News’ own material, including its coverage of current events and trends, but also biographies and documentaries. However, the imprint will also publish independent authors who source their stories with NBC’s resources, Mediabistro notes.

For NBC News, this represents an innovative way to monetize its content on e-readers. This decision is directly connected to the growing popularity of this support – as we reported, Amazon sold over 4 million Kindles in December. Says NBC Publishing’s new general manager Michael Fabiano:

“Over the last two years, we’ve been looking at the tablet market and e-reader market and watching it develop. Consumers are getting more comfortable downloading books with video. None of this is slowing down any time soon.”

This isn’t the first time the news division has ventured into innovative digital publishing; it has already partnered with The Perseus Books Group and with Penguin on interactive e-books, such as “JFK: 50 Days‘ and ‘D-DAY Amplified (Enhanced Edition)’.

As a matter of fact, the digital publishing startup Vook, which was instrumental in producing ‘JFK’, may be involved again in NBC Publishing’s operations to a certain degree. According to Digital Book World, it “is one of several technology vendors being looked at for a larger partnership with the company.”

Still, NBC News is taking things to the next level with NBC Publishing, and its high level of involvement is one more proof of it. Based at NBC’s headquarters in New York, it will have its own senior in-house staff, coming from the publishing and TV sectors. “We’re merging these two disciplines to create new multimedia experiences,” Fabiano says.

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