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Pushed by online video’s growth, Panregional Cable TV Networks bet on multiscreen

Reaching viewers through various platforms is what panregional cable networks are betting on. With a growing trend in the service penetration in Latin America, what should we expect for the next 12 months? Major Miami based panregional media executives answer the above question and more....



Reaching viewers through various platforms is what panregional cable networks are betting on. With a growing trend in the service penetration in Latin America, what should we expect for the next 12 months? Major Miami based  panregional media executives answer the above question and more….


Media buyers are increasingly looking for options The TV industry has continued to grow in Latin America throughout 2014. The growth trend will average 8.21% up to 2017, according to analysts.

According to a BB-Business Bureau study the total number of pay TV subscribers at the end of 2013 was 78, 77 million, reaching almost a 50% penetration in Latin America, the Caribbean and Brazil. According to BB, pay TV will reach 110, 85 million subscribers and a 70% penetration by 2017. Pay TV subscribers will grow at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.21%.

Alfonso Cueto, Sr Director Multi Media Sales at ESPN Latin America and John Mafoutsis, Senior Vice President of Ad Sales and Brand Solutions at Viacom International, talked to Portada on how content delivery and advertiser messages in different chains are being structured, what plans were implementd  for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and what role does online video play in this.

Online Video

“More than ever, our audience is seeking multi-platform digital content, so it is important for us to provide content beyond the classic trvideo.david.jonesaditional TV experience,” John Mafoutsis from Viacom International (VIMN), tells Portada.

Mafoutsis says that at VIMN The Americas they are continually “working and improving infrastructure and team work with strategic partners to implement key digital strategies that connect with audiences and advertisers.”

ESPN’s Alfonso Cueto says that online video is vital for ESPN and an area in which they are pioneers in the world and in Latin America. “We were first to market a multi-screen platform, ESPN Play, where we offer most of our live programming.”

Cueto adds that “our Company’s mission is to serve sports fans anytime, anywhere, which basically means that we have to offer the best content to all screens.

2014 Soccer World Cup- Brazil

Brasil 2014 - mascota -The FIFA World Cup, soccer’s most widely viewed and relevant sporting event, was held this year in the region and both advertisers and media prepared to live up to the occasion. The pan-regional TV networks saw an opportunity to develop specific content for sports fans – as well as other audiences- as World Cup viewers go beyond the traditional sports and football audience.

Cueto notes that “we had a strong programs’ portfolio both during day and night time when the tournament was being aired. We offered pre-coverage, predictions, recaps and experts’ opinions.

Cueto told Portada that in addition to the new content specially developed for the World Cup they created special editions for SportsCenter and ESPN FC including local, editions of local programs in countries of LatAm: Fútbol Picante (Mexico), Balón dividido(Colombia), and Hablemos de fútbol (Argentina).

As regards original content for the World Cup Soccer , ESPN broadcasted “Destino Fútbol” y “Sonidos de Brasil”, in the format of information caps on the World Cup.

Viacom International John Mafoutsis tells Portada that the chain has partnered with a Cinema Group in Brazil to produce specific content for the World Cup “Copa de caos (Cup of chaos)” “The show portrays the story of two Argentine comedians John Isola (Charly) and Hernan Franco (Pipo) on a trip to Brazil for the World Cup along with his idol Messi. The trip does not go as expected and instead of landing in Rio de Janeiro, they reach San Pablo. There are 12 episodes already on air on MTV Latin America pan-regionally,” says the executive.

Advertisers – and Editorial Content: What is the secret formula for a good relationship? Poletto, a member of the marketing team for digital AGEA properties in Argentina, has recently said that “we must no longer think in terms of traditional advertising and a medium that offers advertising space, but think in terms of strategic partners, media-brands.”

John Mafoutsis from Viacom International, says the research in VIMN is “our inspiration that shapes our business and our brand, leading our content and marketing and building knowledge about information for marketers targeting the millennials.”

In Which type of content are advertisers interested the most? Portada asked:

Both Cueto as Mafoutsis highlight that there is always an interest for original content produced by the chains.

Alfonso Cueto, ESPN: “Live events earn the most attention, led by European Cups like the UEFA, the Champions League, BBVA league and Barclay’s. There is also much interest in the Tennis Grand Slams and US sports. ”

John Mafoutsis, Viacom International, “Among favourite contents are: long-form content, awards shows, local productions, as well as local content short caps produced in-house by our LABS division (Latin America Brand Solutions).”

More data!

The pay-TV market in the region:

  • Argentina ranks first with respect to Pay TV penetration with 83% to US $ 10, 69 million subscribers. (Business Bureau)
  • Other countries , which are part of higher penetration rates ranking, are the Caribbean (Aruba, Barbados, Curacao and Trinidad and Tobago) with 74% coverage, Venezuela with 68%, Puerto Rico with 62% and Uruguay, Colombia, Chile and Honduras with ratios close to 60%. (Business Bureau)
  • In Mexico, the category that invested the most in pay television for the first three months of 2014 was: Retail / Department Stores / Supermarkets, with Walmart and SAMS In West gathering 44 % investments in pay television, followed by Liverpool, Homer TLC, Sears, Sanborns, Coppel, Palacio de Hierro, Grupo Femsa and Comercial Mexicana. (Datacheck)


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