ABC News President Ben Sherwood Announces Plans for New Joint Venture with Univision to News Division

By David Ford

May 7, 2012 8:57am

ABC News President Ben Sherwood sent the following note to ABC News staff announcing plans for a new pioneering joint venture with Univision:

This morning we’re announcing a far-reaching joint venture that will propel ABC News into the future of news and information.  Like our alliance with Yahoo!, this new enterprise represents an important leap forward for our division.

We’re joining forces with Univision, the powerful #1 player in Hispanic media, to launch a 24/7 news, information and lifestyle network primarily in English that will serve the youngest and fastest-growing demographic in the country: U.S. Hispanics.

At 50 million strong and projected to grow to almost one-third of the U.S. population by 2050, Hispanics play a vital role in American business, government, media, music, film, science, medicine and so many other fields.  Together, U.S. Hispanics make up one of the largest economies in the world, at $1 trillion dollars and growing, and are a coveted audience for newsmakers and advertisers.  They want news and information in Spanish and in English – as our friends at Univision like to say, they love fútbol and football.  But until now there’s never been a network in English aimed at them with culturally relevant news, information, lifestyle, entertainment, health, wellness and other programming.

Founded in 1962, Univision has a deep and important relationship with the U.S. Hispanic audience.  By sharing our resources, we will inform, entertain and empower the enormously influential Hispanic American community and many others interested in our programming.

Our new outlet will be uniquely positioned to tackle the fast-changing media landscape by delivering original content on-air, online and everywhere people consume media. Putting digital first, ABC News and Univision will launch the venture online this summer.  We expect that our new television channel will be operating by the first half of 2013.

This new partnership delivers on our 2012 priorities — increasing our reach, developing new growth businesses, creating new content, excelling in political coverage and strengthening our digital presence.  It will provide even greater exposure for the talented journalists of ABC News to tell the great stories of our time. And it will allow us to deepen our conversation with the Hispanic community across all of our platforms.

The joint venture is subject to the completion of definitive agreements.

More information can be found here.

At 12:30 ET today, please join me and some members of the Univision leadership and team to hear more about this exciting new venture.

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