The event wasn’t all business, but the Latino-focused media company never lost sight of its main mission. Even singer Shakira, who performed for advertisers, recognized that the upfront was about relationship building. She ended her appearance directly addressing company owner Haim Saban, who was in the audience. She says that she considers herself “part of the Univision familiy. You can always, always count on me.” The Facebook news underscored the company’s big push this year into digital media. Univision says it will introduce its online programming destination, UVideos, this summer by having its celebrities and personalities participate in a series of live chats on Facebook. But Univision’s bottom line focus was laid out in Ad Sales and Marketing President David Lawenda’s opening presentation — the most direct and compelling sales pitch I’ve heard so far this upfront season. “Move 15% of your budget to Univision” he told the audience. “You have flat or declining media budgets,” he noted. His networks’ audiences are growing while the traditional English language networks ask for higher CPM unit rates on their flat or declining ratings. “The single biggest risk you can make going out of here today is to do what you did last year.” Execs fired their sharpest barbs at NBC. Univision says it beat the network’s prime time 18-to-49 audience on 195 nights. “NBC’s ‘Must See TV’ has become ‘Might See TV’,” Lawenda says. READ MORE »
The new Spanish-language streaming service will offer some free content, but mostly will serve as a digital destination for pay TV customers who want to watch shows and telenovelas on demand from the company’s networks including Univision, Galavision, and TeleFutura, execs said in a conference call. They also plan to produce programming for UVideos, with some for genre-specific broadband channels. Along with the new digital initiative, execs on Tuesday will talk up their just-announced joint venture with Disney to create an English-language news channel for Hispanic audiences. CEO Randy Falco says that Univision will urge advertisers to look across all of the company’s broadcast, cable, and digital platforms. The pitch, under the theme “Latinos Live Here,” is that Univision reaches about 20% of marketers’ target audiences with 73% of the Hispanic market. They’ll also note that the average age of its prime time audiences is 36 vs 51 for the major English language networks. About 94% of Univision viewers watch live broadcasts. Among the other announcements: Univision is beefing up its own news operations in Miami, New York, and Los Angeles. There’ll be a huge jump in sports programming on Univision Deportes. And Univision has signed a deal to broadcast the Latin Grammy Awards for the rest of the decade.
Here’s the company’s release about its initiatives and programming plans:
This plan, which leaked in February, represents a bold departure for the companies in the 50-50 joint venture. ABC has long felt that it missed its chance to launch a news network, while Univision has focused on Spanish-language programming. But the companies see an opening by aligning with the fast-growing population of English-speaking Hispanics. They’ll start off with a Web presence this summer — in time for the presidential election — although the TV channel won’t be up until 2013. Competition for the audience is intensifying: News Corp plans to introduce Spanish-language MundoFox this fall. Also, Comcast has vowed to invest in Telemundo, Univision’s biggest rival. Here’s the announcement:
MAY 7 – NEW YORK, NY – ABC News and Univision News today announced they have agreed in principle to form a far-reaching, multiplatform joint venture dedicated to informing, empowering and inspiring Hispanic Americans in English while providing all audiences with uncompromising coverage of current events with a unique perspective. The landmark agreement would capitalize on Univision’s news leadership and expertise in reaching U.S. Hispanics and ABC’s global news leadership to serve over 50 million Hispanics, the youngest and fastest-growing demographic in the U.S. The new 24/7 network will include America’s first English-language channel for English-dominant and bilingual Hispanics as well as integrated digital and social platforms. It will deliver news content focused on issues, lifestyle interests and culture of importance to Hispanics and will feature the trusted, award-winning journalists of ABC News and Univision News. Now for the first time Hispanic Americans will have a choice for uncompromising coverage of current events and lifestyle with a Latino perspective in English. The transaction is subject to the completion of definitive agreements.
Movie promotion on the ABC, NBC, CBS, and Fox morning shows are so boooooring compared to Univision’s “Despierta America”. Here Alvin And The Chipmunks promote the DVD release of Fox’s Chipwrecked:rtmp://streaming.deadline.com/ondemand/video/ALVIN_-_Despierta_America.flv
The Walt Disney Co. and Univision Communications Inc. are in talks to partner on a 24-hour news channel, the Wall Street Journal reports. The channel would broadcast in English in a bid to align with changing demographics among U.S. Hispanics who speak English. The new channel would mark a huge departure for both ABC and Univision. ABC has stayed out of the cable news wars, and Univision has always been defined by its Spanish-language broadcasts. If the talks are successful, the joint venture’s goal would be to get the network up and running before the November elections. It would be based in Miami where Univision already has studios, the Journal said. Discussions have been taking place for more than a year and could still unravel. It would be led on the Disney side by ABC News President Ben Sherwood and on the Univision side by Univision Networks President Cesar Conde. The proposed partnership would be a bet by both companies that consumer spending by Latinos will continue to grow faster than the rest of the population. The number of English-speaking U.S.-born Latinos is also growing at a faster rate than those who speak Spanish.
Dish Network CEO Joe Clayton says that ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC shouldn’t have a problem with his company’s just-announced PrimeTime Anytime DVR feature that automatically records the networks’ primetime shows, holds them for a week, and also streams them on-demand to computers, tablets and other mobile devices. But he doesn’t know. “I haven’t personally talked to every single one of them, but I’m sure they’re aware of it,” he says. He adds that Dish shouldn’t have to worry that it’s treading on their right to license TV Everywhere rights, or look-back VOD service to cable operators and online destinations such as Hulu. “This is no different than an opt-in for any DVR,” he says. I’m told that lawyers for the networks are reviewing the Dish service to see whether there’s a problem.
Clayton was in a buoyant mood, though, as he officially disclosed the news that had already leaked about his company’s powerful new DVR product — called Hopper — and Dish’s corporate makeover.
UPDATE: Fox Steals World Cup TV Rights From ESPN & Telemundo Scores Too; Total Deal Could Exceed $1B
UPDATE: 12:45 PM: The Sports Business Daily is reporting that Fox will pay $450 million-$500 million for rights to the next two World Cups, and Telemundo will pay $600 million. If true, those are massive markups from …