A major Spanish-language TV network has announced a move that could significantly expand its audience, the Los Angeles Times reports in its Company Town blog.
Univision revealed Tuesday during the NATPE conference in Miami that it will add closed-captioned English-language subtitles to its prime-time telenovelas starting next week, the story reports.
Univision is already the fifth-ranked U.S. network, and Spanish-language programming has been a growth area — attracting increasing interest from advertisers.
Executives for Univision have long expressed the belief that the prime-time soaps, which air five nights a week, have the potential to appeal to a wider audience than the channel’s Spanish-speaking base. The telenovelas have consistently been among Univision’s highest-rated programs, sometimes matching the viewer numbers for English-language programming on the major broadcast networks.
Said Cesar Conde, president of Univision Networks: “The continued success of the telenovela genre speaks to its broad appeal that crosses culture and language, which is why, as part of our commitment to connect audiences to our culture, we are delivering our novela block with closed captioning in English.”
The move follows the announcement earlier this week that News Corp. is creating a new Spanish-language network for the U.S. market, as previously reported.