Telemundo luminaries and top executives this week began
arriving in Mexico City to take part in the official launch of the Telemundo
Cable Network, the U.S. broadcaster's joint venture with Televisa Networks, a
subsidiary of Mexican media giant Grupo Televisa.
The Telemundo Cable Network will begin airing August 1,
reaching approximately 2 million homes in Mexico
and Latin America through some of Mexico's
largest cable-TV systems, including Sky and Cablevision.
"This partnership is essential to our business," Don Browne,
president of NBC Universal-owned Telemundo, told Hispanic Television Update. "But this is not a one-dimensional
event; it is the continuation of a relationship that keeps growing and
The new cable channel is the third big move in a strategic
alliance announced in 2008 between Telemundo and Grupo Televisa to distribute
Telemundo's original content in Mexico
through various platforms, including over-the-air TV, pay TV and digital
platforms. In 2008, Televisa's Canal 9 began broadcasting Telemundo programming
in Mexico as
part of a 10-year agreement between both programmers. Since launch, several
Telemundo programs have positioned themselves as market leaders in several
dayparts, including telenovelas Victoria and DoÃ±a BÃ¡rbara.
The Telemundo Cable Network will feature some of Telemundo's
popular telenovelas, variety shows like Al
Rojo Vivo and other family-oriented shows, as well as some high-rated music
specials, including the Latin Billboard
Awards. Programming is to consist of eight-hour blocks that will repeat
three times per day.
For Browne, and other top Telemundo executives, the deal
with Televisa is also important because it will help familiarize potential U.S.
immigrants from Mexico
with the Telemundo brand and content.
"A huge disadvantage we had in the past was that Mexican
citizens coming to the U.S.
were not aware of the Telemundo brand," said Browne. "Now, these guys will be
familiar not only with our content, but also with our brand."
On hand for the July 30 launch press event, which will take
place at the Televisa San Angel studios, will be several of Telemundo's on-screen
talent, including MarÃa Celeste ArrarÃ¡s, PenÃ©lope Menchaca, MÃ³nica Noguera and
Doctora Ana MarÃa Polo, among others.