Televisa, Intel forge content pact

Array of telenovelas, news, sports to be among offerings

Televisa, the world’s biggest producer of Spanish-language TV content, announced late Thursday a deal to provide content on demand through Intel’s Viiv PCs.

News is the first of a string of expected deals with video-capable gadget makers.

Televisa is gearing up to offer its vast array of telenovelas, news, sports and shows on demand through leading manufacturers by spring. In November, Televisa launched music download site Tarabu with the participation of all the major record labels.

“Today, Televisa programming and content are enjoyed by more than 425 million Hispanic consumers in the Americas and Europe, and with this exciting new collaboration with Intel our distribution reach will grow significantly,” said Emilio Azcarraga, Televisa’s prexy and chief executive officer, in a statement.

Juan Saldivar, director of Televisa’s Internet site, told Daily Variety the company is working to reach deals with other companies, such as PDA and cellphone manufacturers. Net is making its catalog of content compatible with different technologies.

Deals will also include producing, such as computers, with pre-installed content. Saldivar described the possibilities of merchandizing Televisa’s hit teen televonela “Rebelde” with its spin-off music group, RBD.

“You can have a ‘Rebelde’ PC that comes with 25 episodes, all the music, a link to Web content, or whatever you come up with,” he said.

Philip Remek, a senior equity analyst at Miami-based Guzman & Co., said it would be years before content on demand would make up a significant chunk of Televisa’s revenue.

Televisa still has to work out a deal with Univision, with which it has a programming and licensing agreement that runs through 2017, about handling sales in the U.S.

Much of Univision’s Televisa content airs months after the Mexican broadcast. An obvious issue the companies will need to settle is the sale of content that has not yet ran in the U.S., Remek said.

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