By Veronica Villafañe
Posted on 04 November 2014.
Telemundo’s sister bilingual cable network is dropping the name it’s had since it launched in 2001.
Calling it a “major step in its evolution,” the NBCUniversal Cable-owned property, which until now was aimed at a young Latino audience, will relaunch as “NBC Universo” on Sunday, February 1, 2015 as an entertainment and sports network.
The rebrand to NBC UNIVERSO takes place the day that the network becomes the home of the exclusive Spanish-language telecast of Super Bowl XLIX in the U.S.
As part of its new branding, the network will use a logo that features NBC’s iconic peacock.
NBC UNIVERSO will showcase sports action from around the world, as well as entertainment, music and series that the company says will connect with U.S. Hispanics.
“mun2′s transformation into a high-demand cable network is one of our top company priorities,” said Joe Uva, Chairman, Hispanic Enterprises and Content, NBCUniversal in a statement.
In September, mun2 launched the first of 100 matches it will air of the 2014/2015 season of the Barclays Premier League (BPL), as well as the first of five NFL games to air on the network this season. Also in September, mun2 became available for distribution in HD.
In addition to the NFL and BPL, NBC UNIVERSO will partner with NBC Sports Group and Telemundo to cover four FIFA World Cup events in 2015: Men’s FIFA U-20 World Cup, hosted by New Zealand from May 30 to June 20; FIFA Women’s World Cup™ played in Canada from June 6 to July 5; Men’s FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup hosted by Portugal from July 9 to July 19; and FIFA U-17 World Cup played in Chile from October 17 to November 8.
NBC UNIVERSO also will exclusively showcase The Rio 2016 Olympic Games, The NASCAR Mexico Toyota Series and WWE programming hits WWE Raw and WWE Smackdown in Spanish.
On the entertainment front, NBC UNIVERSO will continue to develop and deliver a broad mix of original, signature and acquired series and reality shows, such as their current productions “A Toda Gloria,” “Larrymania” and “Fugitivos de la Ley.”
Blockbuster movies and music offerings aimed at a modern Latino audience will also be key programming pillars of NBC UNIVERSO. Specific entertainment programming details will be released in early 2015.