TelevisaUnivision has announced Vix as its flagship streaming brand, with ad-supported subscription and free versions set to launch in the coming months.
The private company unveiled the name this morning at the start of a virtual presentation, a 40-minute preview that was light on finances but heavy on sizzle reels and superlatives.
Vix has been part of the Univision fold since the company acquired it last February. At the time of this deal, the plan was to have it power the national streaming outlet PrendeTV, but Vix will now supplant PrendeTV as the primary streaming banner. Three currently existing streaming services on previous Televisa and Univision footprints will be integrated into Vix. Univision completed its merger with the media arm of Grupo Televisa last month.
The AVOD tier of Vix will launch on March 31, with the Vix+ subscription debuting in the second half of 2022.
Vix will offer 40,000 hours of on-demand programming and 100 linear channels, including a new 24/7 sports offering, Zona TUDN.
Vix+ will have over 50 original tracks in its first year and a number of major talent deals, including one with Salma Hayek.
The subscription price for Vix+ has not yet been confirmed. At a press conference after the investor presentation, TelevisaUnivision Chairman Pierluigi Gazzolo said the company was still conducting “thorough analysis of socio-economic conditions” in various territories to finalize pricing. In addition to the United States and Mexico, Vix+ will launch throughout Latin America.
He promised “a price below the lowest price of any global streamer you see out there. We want to be competitive and, frankly, we want to reflect the socio-economic contributions of our regions in Latin America in particular.
The sizzling main reel has teased some of the exclusive content viewers will only find on its streaming platform, including rebel, the musical telenovela that helped launch the careers of Alfonso Herrera, Maite Perroni and Anahi. Netflix released a sequel reboot series in January, which was recently renewed for a second season.
As Deadline exclusively revealed in October, Eugenio Derbez and his 3Pas Studios have signed an initial deal with Univision to create original scripted and unscripted projects in Spanish for Univision’s global streaming SVOD content slate.
The multi-year deal also includes curating the new “Derbez Channel” with family and comedy content available through the network’s free AVOD tier, and releasing titles featuring Derbez that put him on the map. A sample of titles includes Al Derecho and al Derbez, The Family P. Lucheand the hit movie Instructions not included.
Other offerings on Vix and Vix+ will include news and sports, which are mainstays of the company’s linear platforms. Univision news anchor Jorge Ramos will have a show on Vix+.
The premise behind investing in streaming is that Spanish-speaking viewers are underserved. Rival Telemundo recently rolled out TPlus, a new programming brand for premium fare on Peacock from parent company NBCUniversal. Netflix has also gained traction with Spanish-language shows like House of Papelleveraging its global presence of 222 million subscribers.
Wade Davis, the former Viacom CFO who led the Univision takeover and is now CEO of TelevisaUnivision, kicked off the investor event with some opening remarks on the merger. “We’ve created a platform unlike anything on the planet,” he said, noting the daily reach of 100 million Spanish speakers across TV, radio, digital and streaming. “One of the most exciting things that will be created by this merger” is the streaming service, he said. “We are about to launch something extraordinary.”
Davis pledged a “massive capital commitment of billions of dollars to new content in Spanish”. This level of expenditure is “multiples of what any other service spends on the language.
Rosy Cordero contributed to this report.