×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Azteca America adds affils

Net now covers 60% of U.S. market

MIAMI — Azteca America, the fledgling Spanish-lingo network owned by No. 2 Mexican broadcaster TV Azteca, expects to reach 75% of the U.S. Hispanic market by the beginning of the fourth quarter.

Azteca America, which bowed in mid-2001 with one station in Los Angeles, last week announced four new affils — KZDF in San Diego, KMCE in Monterey-Salinas, Calif., WTPH in Fort Myers-Naples, Fla., and KOHC in Oklahoma City.

Now with 24 affils, many low-power, it reaches 60% of the market.

The network faces competition for affils. Leading Spanish-lingo broadcaster Univision, which is trying to expand the reach of its Telefutura net, has 75% coverage.

NBC-backed Telemundo is trying to narrow the gap between its 91% reach and Univision flagship net’s 97%.

But Azteca America also is trying to beef up its carriage on cable systems, and recently inked deals in Palm Springs, Calif., and Las Vegas, with other accords said to be in the works.

Those efforts are largely on hold due to a dispute with EchoStar.

The satcaster carries TV Azteca’s Mexican channel, Azteca 13, and claimed its contract gave it an exclusive to all Azteca content in the U.S. through March 2005.

Last month, New York’s Southern District Court rejected EchoStar’s application for a preliminary injunction to prevent cablers from carrying the U.S. Azteca web.

Azteca America is programmed exclusively with content from its parent, with primetime staples usually launching Stateside a month or so after their Mexican bows.

The U.S. network is prepping the launch of its first original production, newscast “Hechos America,” to air at 5 p.m. Pacific time, Azteca prexy-CEO Luis Echarte said.

The newscast will be produced from TV Azteca’s studios in Mexico City, using anchors whose work will be backed up by the Mexican news department and supplemented by correspondents in the U.S., he said.

TV Azteca also will take its celebrity news/gossip show “Ventaneando,” which is produced before a studio audience in Mexico City, on the road to Los Angeles, Las Vegas, New York and Miami to bring it closer to U.S. viewers, Echarte said.

Echarte also is trying to drum up more ad business, acknowledging that the net’s limited availability in its first year created an ad sales “disaster.” He and TV Azteca chairman Ricardo Salinas and other Azteca execs from Mexico held Azteca America’s inaugural upfront presentation May 13 in New York.

“We’re ready with the coverage, and we’ve been getting interest and business from the ad agencies,” Echarte said.

Big advertisers like WalMart and Procter & Gamble are spending some of their coin with the network — as are some Mexican companies with whom Azteca has a relationship south of the border, he said.

More TV

  • vudu-free-movies-tv-shows

    Walmart Brushes Off Reports of Streaming Development Halt

    Walmart isn’t ruling out options for a potential streaming video service, a company spokesperson says. Responding to a CNBC report that the mega-retailer had decided not to launch its own streaming entertainment service after all, Walmart would not confirm that there was any halt in development of such a platform, and did not have anything definitive [...]

  • THE KOMINSKY METHOD

    'Kominsky Method' Renewed for Season 2 at Netflix

    Netflix has picked up “The Kominsky Method” for a second season. The comedy stars starring Michael Douglas and Alan Arkin recently won two Golden Globe Awards, one for best comedy series and the other for Douglas in the best actor in a comedy series category. Arkin was also nominated in the supporting actor category. Season 2 [...]

  • Crackle Latin America

    Sony Shuts Down Crackle Latin America Business

    Sony Pictures Television is folding the Crackle Latin America subscription VOD service, which has 400,000 subscribers across 17 countries, after concluding the business isn’t economically viable. Crackle Latin America first launched in April 2012 as an ad-supported streaming service — like the U.S. version of Crackle — before switching in 2016 to a subscription video-on-demand [...]

  • Empire of Sand Book

    Kronicle Media, Amyale, Rebel Maverick Option YA Novel 'Empire of Sand' for TV (EXCLUSIVE)

    Production companies Kronicle Media, Amyale and Rebel Maverick have partnered to develop the YA fantasy novel “Empire of Sand” by Tasha Suri as a TV series, Variety has learned exclusively. The novel by first-time author Suri is centers on Mehr, the illegitimate daughter of an imperial governor and an exiled Amrithi mother–a member of a race of [...]

  • 'NYPD Blue' Sequel Pilot Casts Fabien

    'NYPD Blue' Sequel Pilot Casts Fabien Frankel in Lead Role

    The “NYPD Blue” pilot at ABC has cast newcomer Fabien Frankel in the role of Theo Sipowicz, Variety has confirmed. Theo is the son of Andy Sipowicz, who was played in the original series by Dennis Franz. Like his father he is described as a hard-drinking, hard-headed, and quick-witted cop. Frankel is a recent graduate of the London Academy of [...]

  • Bradley Whitford photographed at the PMC

    Bradley Whitford on the 'Obligation' to Speak Out Politically

    Having starred on Aaron Sorkin’s “The West Wing” for seven seasons, Bradley Whitford is certainly no stranger to political television. Now he’s in two more such series: Nat Geo’s exploration of the dot-com era, “Valley of the Boom” in which he plays real-life Netscape CEO James Barksdale, as well as Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale,” in [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content