Univision Eyes Growth Through Traditional TV Expansion

 

Traditional television -- broadcast and cable -- is a growth business, an area where media companies can add existing programming and channels.

Univision, for example, wants to start three new cable networks, one for sports, one for telenovelas, and one for news/information.

For many existing media companies, launching even one new network would be a massive undertaking -- especially in this TV environment.

It has been a while since any media company made such a big shelf-space announcement about new traditionally distributed TV channels. ESPN and Discovery Communications were perhaps the last big groups to announce a slew of new cable channels.

But for Univision, with its Spanish-language niche, the move seems to make sense. One estimate says that some 60% of all U.S. citizens will be of Latin American descent some decades from now.

For a long time, TV's big business hurdle was pulling in more advertisers. Right now 16% of the U.S. population is Latin-American, but only 4% of advertising dollars goes into Latin-American-targeted media. That's an ongoing gap that Univision and its main competitor Telemundo have looked to close for some time.

Traditional cable system analog spectrum has been at capacity for years, but the cable digital spectrum could possibly squeeze in some niche networks, which is where Univision would like to head.

Univision grew almost 10% in prime-time ratings this year, and, at times, was the fourth place network, just ahead of NBC. Univision group is composed of two broadcast networks, Univision and TeleFutura; a popular cable channel, Galavision; and TV and radio stations.

Now, it wants more. Eso está claro.

Tags: television, tv
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2 comments about "Univision Eyes Growth Through Traditional TV Expansion".
  1. Harold Cabezas from Cabezas Communications , May 26, 2011 at 11:21 a.m.

    ...Muy claro. Thanks, Wayne, for a great post. I agree with the premise-would not make sense if not for the predictions of an upward-trending US Hispanic demographic in the following decades.

  2. Ron Stitt from Fox Television Stations , May 26, 2011 at 12:07 p.m.

    U.S.-based 24/7 Spanish news network makes a lot of sense. % ad $ for Hispanic media will never match % U.S. population though... oversimplifying, but basically the Hispanic market breaks down into 3 groups...English-dominant, bilingual, and Spanish-dominant. The first two watch mostly English TV. Spanish-dominants watch only a handful of channels (especially Univision), so big ad investments there build astronomical frequency. Expanding the menu of offerings (channels) may have the potential to bring in more of the bilingual crowd, thus building the overall reach capability of Spanish TV in the U.S.