mun2 Jumps Into WWE Ring


New York -- mun2 television, NBC Universal’s Spanish-language cable network, will start airing the WWE Raw franchise this fall, officials said Tuesday.

Executives disclosed that mun2, like sister channel USA Network, had acquired rights to wrestling during a press preview of Spanish-language broadcaster Telemundo’s upfront.

mun2, Telemundo and USA are all owned by NBC Universal, and Telemundo’s actual upfront presentation on the 2005-06 season was set for Tuesday night at Lincoln Center.

Telemundo -- with the new slogan, “Made for You” -- is not only expanding into original primetime dramas but doing a miniseries based on a hit song for the upcoming season.

During their preview, Telemundo executives also briefly discussed the new fare that will air on mun2, which targets young Latinos 12-34.

In addition to wrestling, mun2 has acquired animated series Huevocartoon.The cable service has also commissioned an “exhaustive” research study on Latino youth.

Telemundo itself, based on its strategy of producing original programming, will kick off a new consumer-branding campaign. It will promote itself using the slogan “Hecho para Ti,” or “Made for You,” referring to Telemundo’s game plan of producing original programming for U.S. Hispanics.

The broadcaster’s budget to create programming has increased threefold during the past few years, according to executives.

For the new season, Telemundo has four new novelas that it is bringing to the air. But on top of that, the network is also doing two 13-episode dramas for weekend primetime. Loteria takes a look at what happens to people who become overnight millionaires by winning the lotto, while Envios looks at the lives of immigrants who work in the States and send money back home.

The network is also tackling a primetime miniseries, Pedro Navaja,which is based on a 1970s song that Ruben Blades made into a hit.

In addition, Telemundo is introducing two new reality series, La Quinceanera and Suenos y Sorpresas.

Telemundo was upbeat about its prospects.

“The Spanish-language television industry is incredibly healthy from almost any perspective,” said Steve Mandala, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Telemundo and NBC Universal Networks.

“The thing that drives our health is that viewing to Spanish-language television is up,” he added. “This year, a full 7.1% of all adults 18-49 in the total United States are actually watching Spanish-language television in primetime. That’s up 11% versus prior-year and, remarkably, 10% of all young adults 18-34 watching television in primetime are watching Spanish-language television.”

In order to assist advertisers, Telemundo is using a new tool, “Behavior Graphics,” which combines Nielsen Media Research viewership data with Simmons Market Research Bureau data on consumer behavior, like their buying habits.

Telemundo was also touting the one-stop-shopping multimedia platforms that it will offer advertisers built around themes -- financial planning, child care, education and a tribute to Hispanic mothers. Each of those platforms will incorporate national ads, local community events, online sponsorships and public relations.