NBCU network targets Hispanics via programming push

As NBCUniversal struggles to right the ship of its flagship broadcast net, the conglom is feeling bullish about the Peacock’s Spanish-language sibling Telemundo.

At its upfront presentation in Gotham this evening, Telemundo execs will announce a 40% hike in original programming and more than 800 hours of new content aimed at the growing Hispanic audience. According to Nielsen, Telemundo is the fastest-growing broadcast network in the 18-49 demo.

Based in Hialeah, Fla., and with its own studio on site, Telemundo also owns a majority of its programming, which helps make it highly profitable. Under the supervision of Lauren Zalaznick, chair of NBCU entertainment, digital networks and integrated media, the broadcast net and its Mun2 cable sibling have been a major priority for the Comcast regime.

At last year’s upfront, Telemundo and rival Univision each accumulated more than $2 billion in ad revenue. Most experts see those numbers only going up as the Latino population increases in the U.S.

The strategy is to create a comfort zone with Spanish-speaking viewers with shows that reflect the bicultural nature of their lives in the U.S. but also reflect their roots and homelands.

“Hispanics living in the U.S. often transcend two worlds: roots in their home country and their lives here today,” said Telemundo COO Jacqueline Hernandez. “Our new positioning platform reflects our audience’s duality of being in America and being Latino.”

With telenovelas its primary primetime programming staple, Telemundo is set to air six new stripped sudsers and add a daytime drama series and talkshow. And like so many other channels, Telemundo is adding a musical reality competition series to the mix.

Of the new telenovelas — “El Rostro de la Venganza” (The Face of Revenge), “El Senor de los Cielos” (The Lord of the Heavens), “La Patrona” (The Patron), “Pasion Prohibida” (Forbidden Passion), “Nace un Idolo” (An Idol is Born) and “Fina Estampa” (Fine Pedigree) — all but the last are produced by Telemundo Studios. “Fina Estampa” is a Telemundo Studios and TV Globo co-production.

Telemundo also announced that it has acquired the rights to the sequel of “La Reina del Sur,” the highest-rated telenovela in the net’s history. Production and air dates have yet to be determined.

New reality series “Yo Me Llamo” (My Name Is) asks singers to transform themselves into their favorite musical icon.

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