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eCompanies' next venture: online animation

The Internet incubator is preparing to launch an online animation programming service featuring the work of Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning artists.

Internet incubator eCompanies is preparing to launch an online animation programming service featuring the work of Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning artists.

Icebox, due to launch next month, will boast content by writers from hit TV cartoon shows "South Park" and "King of the Hill" and the expertise of producers from popular TV shows "Seinfeld," "Dawson's Creek" and "Frasier," to name a few.

"The site will give us the opportunity and creative freedom to showcase our work and have unfiltered access to our audience," Chris Keyser, co-creator of the TV show "Party of Five," said in a statement. Keyser is among the writers and producers Icebox chief executive Steve Stanford has cultivated for his Web site.

When Stanford approached Santa Monica, Calif.-based eCompanies with his idea, it quickly caught on, according to an eCompanies representative. eCompanies helps start-ups by providing services such as strategy, financing, business development and marketing.

Founded by EarthLink co-founder Sky Dayton and former Walt Disney Internet executive Jake Winebaum, the company has been on a tear, rapidly growing consumer-oriented Web sites. It has taken a stake in e-commerce start-up Craftopia.com and last fall launched eParties.com and eMemories.com.

In November, eCompanies grabbed the spotlight by paying a hefty $7.5 million for the domain name Business.com to launch a business-to-business Internet service.