NBCUniversal Hispanic Group Focuses on Digital, Sets Up Sports Unit


NEW YORK: Alongside a slate of new dramas and sports content for its Telemundo and NBC Universo channels, the NBCUniversal Hispanic Group will also be launching digital extensions aimed at U.S. Latino audiences during the 2015-16 season.

That multiplatform push will include Double Acción, a concurrent scripted experience that plays out storytelling on a mobile device while the TV show is airing. The company will also launch an interactive comic book series that will allow fans to insert themselves into the action through a mobile device. Meanwhile, the use of R.A.V.E. (Real-time Augmented Virtual Experiences) will complement viewing habits with multiple camera angles and incremental stories by combining a simple attachment to a smartphone. Finally, the group announced a partnership with indie outfit DEFY Media focused on its Spanish-language channel, Clevver Teve, with initial initiatives centered on moms, fitness and beauty running across digital, linear and mobile platforms launching in the fourth quarter of 2015.

In other developments, the group is launching NBC Deportes, a new sports production unit that will expand sports production capabilities and will align and leverage the expertise and resources of the NBC Sports Group. NBC Deportes will be a robust content generator providing world-class sports content across Telemundo, NBC Universo and its digital platforms, featuring exclusive top sports franchises such as FIFA World Cup, the Olympics, NASCAR and more.

Additionally, the division’s networks are set to premiere 1,000 hours of original content. Telemundo will debut its new action-packed super series La querida del centauro (Centaur’s Woman), along with the fourth season of the International Emmy-winning El señor de los cielos (The Lord of the Skies) and the second season of Señora Acero (Mrs. Steel). Scripted dramas will include the immigrant story Bajo el mismo cielo (Under the Same Sky); Celia, inspired by the life of musician Celia Cruz; the romantic story Quién es quién (Twisted Love); and the telenovela La indomable (The Indomitable).

The channel will also offer miniseries such as Hasta que te conocí (Until I Met You), based on the life of Mexican music icon Juan Gabriel, along with Francisco el Jesuita (Francis, The Jesuit), chronicling the life and work of Pope Francis. Telemundo has also picked up Mark Burnett and Roma Downey’s A.D. The Bible Continues, which will air on the network as D.C.: La Biblia continua.

Other 2015-16 programs are the first broadcast of the Latin American Music Awards, the music fest 2015 iHeartRadio Fiesta Latina, a Spanish-language version of Big Brother geared at the U.S. Hispanic audience, and a Saturday night variety show titled La sorpresa de tu vida (The Surprise of Your Life).

Meanwhile, cable channel NBC Universo is beefing up its sports offering, debuting Escena deportiva (Sports Scene), six Spanish-language broadcasts of NFL games, and exclusive coverage of Liga MX soccer games. The channel will also air episodes of Top Chef Mexico, the competition show Reto Extremo: Fuerzas Especiales, the racy drama El sexo débil (The Weaker Sex) and the original scripted drama El Vato.

“Hispanic America is the new mainstream,” said Joe Uva, the chairman of Hispanic Enterprises and Content at NBCUniversal. “As one of the most influential segments of our society, today 57 million Hispanics influence more than 300 million people. With the potential scale and reach of over 90 percent of the Hispanic audience, every month, regardless of language, NBCU offers our clients opportunities that no other media company can when marketing to this vibrant segment of the population.”