InterMedia Taps McNamara to Lead Cine Latino Revamp

New York-based InterMedia Advisors is expected to announce this month the appointment of Jim McNamara, Telemundo’s former chief, as non-executive Chairman of Cine Latino, the Spanish-language movie channel it owns in a 50-50 venture with Mexico City’s Grupo MVS.

“There’s nobody who understands Spanish TV and the U.S. Hispanic market better than Jim,” said Alan Sokol, senior investment partner of InterMedia. “In addition, he has a passion for the movie business.” (See Q&A with Sokol in this newsletter.)

McNamara left the top position at Telemundo in 2005 to start his own movie production venture, Panamax, aimed at producing and distributing films for the bourgeoning U.S. Latino market — or, as the company’s Web site states, to produce films in both English and Spanish to reach an “underserved market.”

The appointment of media veteran McNamara is part of InterMedia’s plan to revamp Cine Latino, the commercial-free movie channel it acquired in 2007 for an undisclosed amount, and for which it has ambitious growth plans. Cine Latino is currently available in 3.5 million homes in the U.S. and in another 2.5 million homes throughout Latin America. “We have a gem here that we can turn into a tremendous destination and brand,” said Sokol.

McNamara will continue to run Panamax from the company’s Miami headquarters.