Grupo Salinas, one of Mexico’s largest business conglomerates and the owner of TV Azteca and Azteca America, has partnered with Sony to launch what it calls the “first global, Internet-based live TV service” in early 2013. Financials were not disclosed.

The service, which was demonstrated yesterday at the TV Connect Latin America Conference in Sao Paulo, is part of the group’s entry into the lucrative, and fast growing business of online video streaming, a business Grupo Salinas entered in 2011 with the launch of video streaming service Totalmovie.

Jorge Chávez, a marketing executive for Totalmovie in Mexico, tells Portada that the service is already available in 40 Latin American countries, and is ready to launch in Brazil in the next few weeks. “We’re entering the country with a local partner,” says Chávez, though he declined to give out specifics. Currently, the service gives users the ability to stream a portfolio of over 3,000 titles between movies, TV series and concerts. The portfolio will expand to include Portuguese- language content.

Launched in 2011, Totalmovie is now the second largest online video service in Latin America, after Netflix, which has a total 30 million subscribers worldwide. According to company officials, Totalmovie has 1.9 million registered users, although not all of those are paid subscribers. The company has not disclosed how many paid subs it currently has.

Through the partnership with Sony, Grupo Salinas will launch what it calls the “first global, Internet-based live TV service” in early 2013.

Launched in 2011, Totalmovie is now the second largest online video service in Latin America, after Netflix, which has a total 30 million subscribers worldwide.

While Totalmovie has set up offices in San Jose, California, Miami, Florida and Vancouver, Canada, the service is not yet available in the U.S. or Canada, as the strategy is to focus first on emerging markets. An entry into the U.S. Hispanic market is “definitely” in the horizon, says Chávez.

In presenting the service yesterday in Brazil, Totalmovie’s Executive Chairman Samer Salameh, highlighted some of the service’s tech advantages, including a Catch Up TV function allowing viewers to see programs from the previous 3 days that are automatically stored on the Totalmovie Cloud. Salameh demonstrated the product on a mobile device and confirmed the service will be available “in the coming months.”

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Laura has lived and worked as a journalist in Mexico, Chile, Argentina and the U.S. She was the founder and editor in chief of Marketing y Medios magazine, an English- language trade publication devoted to explaining the Hispanic market to a non-Spanish speaking audience of executives and marketers. Prior to that, she was responsible for creating and launching the Spanish-language edition of the Wall Street Journal. She was also the creator and founding editor of Entrepreneur magazine´s Spanish-language Web site www.SoyEntrepreneur.com. She is fluent in Spanish, English and French and works as a freelance writer and editor in New York City.

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