Televisa plans news channel

Spanish-language network to peddle 24-hour cycle

MEXICO CITY — The head of the world’s largest producer of Spanish-language media took to Twitter to leak news of company plans to give a 24-hour news network another try in 2010.

A Televisa spokesman confirmed conglom’s prexy Emilio Azcarraga Jean’s statements, adding that the channel would offer news and opinion 24 hours a day.

Web ran a similar project, Noticias ECO, from 1988-2001 via satellite, but the channel could not achieve profitability and was shuttered.

The prexy said they were “correcting” the mistakes made with ECO and “augmenting” the idea but added that details would not be made public yet.

We were the first to make a news channel (in Spanish); the rest followed,” he said. “We are making a different, open forum.”

New channel has a built-in customer base as Televisa owns cablers Cablevision, Cablemas and Cablevision Monterrey and satcaster Sky. All together, Televisa boasts more than 1.8 million subscribers in Mexico, and Sky has made significant inroads in Central America, gaining 135,000 subs in six countries there and the Dominican Republic.

Given the web’s recent heavy investment and expansion into the online realm, it appears likely that the news net will have a significant Internet presence as well.

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