Photo: Disney and Univision
Univision Communications Inc. is negotiating with the Walt Disney Co. the launch of a 24-hour cable news channel in English in response to demographic changes in the Latino community and as an attempt to land its share of the English-speaking audience.
According to The Wall Street Journal, Univision President Cesar Conde and the head of Disney’s ABC News division, Ben Sherwood, are leading talks about the new channel, which would mean the biggest change in 50 years for the country’s top Spanish-language television broadcaster.
Univision had announced plans to launch three TV channels this year, including a news channel.
Should an agreement be reached, the new Miami-based channel would be on the air before the November elections, The Journal said.
The project reflects the reality that new generations of Latinos born in the United States speak more English than Spanish, the newspaper said.
Univision and Disney executives have not commented on the new channel, but their efforts come at a very competitive time for capturing the attention of Hispanics, who according to the 2010 Census represent the fastest growing population segment in the United States.
Univision rival Telemundo has invested heavily in improving its content, The Journal said.
It also noted the recent announcement that News Corp and Colombian broadcaster RCN are launching MundoFox, a new Spanish-language channel targeting the U.S. Hispanic market.