Star Interactive has begun to review its portal business plan in view of the recent dotcom bust.
As part of the review, the company is likely to prune the number of vortals to be launched from the proposed 12 or 13.
The news portal would be launched first, next month, along with the broadband plans. The news portal will have its content team and will be called Starnews.com. The Star group has made significant investments in taking up strategic stakes in eight or nine vertical portals, which would all come under a horizontal portal. Star is also looking at pooling resources from portals where it holds a minority stake.
The interactive division has been holding meetings with representatives of dotcoms it has invested in, including Pradeep Kar’s indya.com, indiaproperties.com, bazee.com and egurucool.com.
Star Interactive is meant to be a vehicle for Murdoch’s investments in the Indian infotech sector. The convergence arm had reportedly chalked out a plan to pick up stakes in several portals.
However, with dotcoms experiencing a downslide, Star Interactive has decided to put further investments on hold.
The meetings at Star Interactive come in the wake of News Corp, Star’s Hong Kong-based parent company, pulling the shutters down on its online services in the US.