Fox and its partner, Colombia’s RCN Television Group, say that they expect MundoFox to be carried on TV stations that reach 75% of all U.S. households. Affiliate deals in top Hispanic markets are “being finalized,” they add. Programming will come from RCN, Fox International Channels, sports channel Fox Deportes, the Shine Group, RCN’s news and sports channel NTN24, and third-party suppliers. “There is an increasing demand for quality Spanish-language content  in the U.S. from both viewers and advertisers,” says Fox International Channels CEO Hernan Lopez. “FOX saw similar dynamics in play 25 years ago when it launched the Fox network, and it would be a missed opportunity not to provide an alternative for the 50+ million Latino viewers who currently have limited options in Spanish-language broadcast television. Our partnership with RCN will help us do this and we aim do it in a big way.”

But it may be hard for MundoFox to find its place. Univision, widely believed to be gearing up for an IPO, is already a tough competitor: It’s the No. 5 network, and frequently beats English-language stations. And NBCUniversal is investing in Telemundo. It surprised many analysts in October by winning a bidding war to provide Spanish-language telecasts of soccer’s World Cup games in 2018 and 2022. They’d been a staple on Univision since 1978. Here’s the release about MundoFox:

Miami, FL – January 23, 2012 – Fox International Channels and the RCN Television Group (RCN), headquartered in Colombia, jointly announced today the formation of joint venture which will launch MundoFox, a new Spanish-language television network catering to the U.S. Hispanic market. The network, scheduled to launch during the Fall season of 2012 in Hispanic homes nationwide, will aim to bring a similar sensibility as the Fox Network to Latino audiences, with exciting entertainment, best-in-class programing content and differentiation from the limited options currently available to viewers.

“Our partnership with RCN is a key step in the launch of MundoFox” said Hernan Lopez, President & CEO of Fox International Channels. “There is an increasing demand for quality Spanish-language content in the U.S. from both viewers and advertisers. FOX saw similar dynamics in play 25 years ago when it launched the Fox network, and it would be a missed opportunity not to provide an alternative for the 50+ million Latino viewers who currently have limited options in Spanish-language broadcast television. Our partnership with RCN will help us do this and we aim do it in a big way.”

“RCN has provided the main Hispanic networks in the US with much of their prime-time content for over two decades. We now plan to maximize our capabilities and bring an increasing variety of fresh and innovative productions directly to Spanish-speaking viewers. I am certain that FOX is the best partner to make this a successful network,” said Gabriel Reyes, CEO of RCN.

Fox International Channels operates 350 channels in 35 countries, and most recently achieved great success with a consortium of three cable networks targeting the U.S. Hispanic consumer: FOX Deportes, Utilisima and NatGeo Mundo. RCN is one of the largest producers and exporters of Spanish-language television in the world and operates cable channels throughout the Americas.

Content for the network will come from several diverse sources, including:

1. RCN Television S.A. – the top broadcaster in Colombia. Past successes from this creative force have been the original “Ugly Betty,” called “Betty La Fea”, the only Spanish-Language series to have inspired a mainstream U.S. network drama; and “El Capo”, an action-packed prime time daily series that has broken ratings records in many countries, including the US.

2. Fox International Channels – over the last several years, FOX has produced
high-quality weekly dramas for prime time that combine US-style, character-driven story-telling and visuals with Latino sensibility. Additionally, it has produced gripping factual series and a wide array of lifestyle shows.

3. FOX Deportes – the #1 sports brand for the U.S. Hispanic market, with exclusive U.S. Spanish-language rights to the UFC, as well as various soccer tournaments, including Copa Santander Libertadores, Copa Bridgestone Sudamericana, and European tournaments. Some of these events will be broadcast on MundoFox.

4. Shine Group – one of the leading producers of unscripted and scripted programming worldwide (including hit formats “The Biggest Loser”, “MasterChef” and “One Born Every Minute” and successful international dramas including “Merlin” and “The Hour”), will be producing their first original Spanish language content for MundoFox.

5. NTN24 – RCN’s international, 24-hour channel that offers Spanish-language news, analysis, opinion, sports and entertainment news programs from a uniquely Latin point of view. NTN24 also produces online, English language content with an emphasis on news from the Americas.

6. Third-party Suppliers – additionally, MundoFox will license and/or commission original programs and movies from a variety of third party producers, both from the English-language world as well as Spanish.

Although distribution is currently being established, MundoFox has plans to be carried on stations covering 75% of US households. The network currently has several affiliate deals being finalized in top Hispanic markets across the country.