TelevisaUnivision held its upfront presentation at the Javits Center in New York May 17. Under a “Grow With Us” banner, Donna Speciale, president of U.S. ad sales and marketing, noted the role the merger of the Spanish-language giants played in making Univision — and Televisa, for that matter — stronger.
“It has been an incredible transformation,” she said.
Speciale mentioned 62 million Hispanics in the U.S., and considerably younger viewers than their English-language counterparts. “We’ve hit the tipping point,” she said. “The time is now to invest in this audience.”
Pierluigi Gazzolo, president and chief transformation officer of Televisa Univision, talked up streamer Vix, calling it “a service that will shine a light on our unique and diverse stories.”
Gazzolo mentioned “unmatched original content,” on the platform, not a repurposing of linear programming.
Actor and comedian Eugenio Derbez spoke of his “love connection” with Vix, where he is curating a comedy channel.
Execs teased Algo Personal con Jorge Ramos, which Univision said will allow “viewers to get to see Jorge like they’ve never seen him before.”
On video, Sofia Vergara chatted up a Koati animated series based on a film “that celebrates our culture.”
Speciale returned to talk about Asi Studios, which she said is “here to help you show up the right way every day,” specializing in insights, creative and data. In Spanish, Asi means “just like this.”
Speciale took a salsa spin on the dance floor with Juan Carlos, prompting Luis Silberwasser, president of U.S. Television Networks Group, to say, “The things we do for a higher CPM.”
Silberwasser talked about Despierta America (“the only morning show on TV that is growing its audience,” he said), novelas and the Latin Grammys.
TUDN host Adriana Monsalve called the sports net “the ultimate destination for sports aficionados across the country,” and introduced former soccer adversaries Landon Donovan and Oswaldo Sanchez, who spoke about the CONCACAF Gold Cup and CONCACAF Champions League on TUDN. Monsalve said “nothing is more intense than the Mexico and USA rivalry.”
Jorge Ramos then stepped out. He spoke of sitting with presidents and celebrities on the news program, but added that his “greatest privilege is serving the community that I belong to and that I love.”
Viewers “see themselves in our news program,” he added.
Producer/director/musician Emilio Estefan spoke about bio series Univisionarios, and Lili Estefan and Raul De Molina, hosts of El Gordo y la Flaca, talked about novelas. “They are not your grandmother’s novelas anymore,” said Estefan, including Los Ricos Tambien Lloran.
Adrian Uribe talked up his late night show De Noche Pero Sin Sueno. “Absolutely anything can happen on De Noche Perso Sin Sueno,” he said.
Sebatian Yatra wrapped up the event with a musical performance. ■
Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.
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