NBC to shut down LX brand

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NBCUniversal is shutting down its LX digital news brand and associated network.

The network, which is available as a digital subchannel in many markets, is also carried on Xfinity and a variety of streaming services.

NBCU says it expects to “wind down” operations at LX by mid-2023. About 40 people who work for the brand will be out of a job,  though NBCU says it hopes to find new positions for them within the company.

LX was targeted at younger audiences, but it failed to gain much traction on either TV or digital platforms.

Earlier in 2023, LX put the brakes on live original productions, which was an early signal that NBCU was trying to cut back its spending on LX.

After LX shuts down, NBCU will still have significant operations in the digital news arena. It already operates streaming news provider NBC News Now. It has also launched local streaming offerings at its owned stations in major markets that offer news.

NBCU has avoided large-scale layoffs that many other major media empires have implemented in recent months in the face of the possibility of a cooling economy and goal of cutting costs and slowing ad market.

Despite shuttering LX, the number of jobs lost will be relatively small compared to other cuts, such as Disney’s reported 7,000 person staff reduction.

LX has its roots in LXTV, which was founded in 2006. NBCU bought the venture in 2008 and now uses the name LXTV to refer to the production unit that provides much of the programming for LX.

It can also trace part of its history back to the Nonstop brand, though the two brands technically have separate lineages.

NBC launched NBC New York Nonstop in 2009 as a 24-hour local news and information offering, eventually expanding the concept to nine of the network’s owned stations. During the years Nonstop operated, it frequently featured content produced by LXTV, with local stations filling in much of the remaining schedule.

NBCU wasn’t able to make the Nonstop news channels financially viable, so it shut down those efforts and relaunched the channels as Cozi TV in 2012, with a focus on airing reruns of programming from the 1960s to 2000s.