Azteca America kicked off its 2017-2018 Upfront roadshow in New York by announcing a roster of new programs featuring a timely new original production, “El Muro” (The Wall), a hauntingly familiar, ripped-from-the-headlines scripted series. The network also announced the return of MISS UNIVERSE® as well as new capabilities for advertisers through programmatic and over-the-top (OTT) platforms. The announcements were made by Azteca America executives Manuel Abud, President and Chief Executive Officer; Craig Geller, Executive Vice President, Network Sales and Digital; and Margarita Black, Vice President of Programming. They were joined by popular network talent Verónica del Castillo, Lourdes Figueroa, and 2016 Miss Universe Iris Mittenaere at The Times Center.
"After three years of experiencing substantial ratings growth, we are excited to present the most robust lineup to ever air on our screen," said Abud. "These programming investments further reinforce Azteca America’s commitment to our audience by delivering relevant, world-class programming of the highest production quality and expanding our distribution to reach more U.S. Hispanic households.”
Following a strong 2016 upfront season, which featured customized, consultative Upfront meetings with clients and partners in four key markets, Azteca continued its successful solutions-oriented Upfront roadshow strategy this year. New to Azteca’s Upfront mix is a stop in Miami (April 6) to meet the demand of advertisers in this important Hispanic market now served by a full-power Azteca station, WGEN. In addition to New York and Miami, Azteca will hold meetings in Chicago, Los Angeles and Dallas.
“This year, we continue to collaborate with advertisers to create customized and effective multi-screen marketing solutions through our proven total-market, consultative approach,” added Geller. “Unlike the rest of the marketplace, our viewers spent 58% more time watching Azteca than the previous season; a remarkable 28% year-over-year increase.”
NEW PROGRAMMING ON AZTECA FOR 2017-2018:
Azteca is proud to announce two new original scripted series in its primetime grid. They are:
“El Muro” (“The Wall”): Kicking off the new programming slate is the network’s highly anticipated new original series, “El Muro” (The Wall), produced exclusively for Azteca America in the United States. Set on the border between Arizona and Mexico, this hauntingly familiar drama brings to life one of the most controversial topics in the country today. The series tells the love story between Adriana, an undocumented immigrant, and Calixto, the immigration officer in charge of her deportation. Their story unfolds in a new programming format – ten individual stories (5 episodes each, 50 total) revolving around one central narrative. This ripped-from-the-headlines series will hit home on a topic close to many Azteca viewers.
“El Manicomio” (“Mental Hospital”): Azteca’s new thriller is a series about Mariana, a passionate reporter, whose grandmother mysteriously dies in a psychiatric hospital. Mariana suspects her grandmother’s death was not due to natural causes, and she pays a high price to discover the truth – she checks herself into the hospital as clinically insane to conduct a deeper investigation. Mariana must uncover the truth before her obsession with the investigation can justify the hospital’s intent to keep her locked up for the rest of her life. Produced in Mexico for Azteca America, this thirteen-episode, hour-long series will get viewers hooked from the start.
NEW DRAMATIC SERIES
“Vis a Vis”: This intense prison thriller tells the story of Macarena Ferreiro, a young naive woman who falls in love with her boss and is manipulated by him to participate in illegal activity. She is sentenced to seven years in prison and is faced with the day-to-day dangers of being incarcerated. Macarena quickly realizes that in order to survive her time in jail, she will need to change her ways and adhere to a prisoner’s code.
“Relatos Misteriosos” (“Mystical Tales”): This series brings to life the world’s most intriguing mysteries through documentary-style dramatizations and reenactments. The hour-long co-production appeals to Azteca viewers’ passion for all things supernatural as they are called to question – are these stories mere coincidences or is there more we don’t know?
This season Azteca will return for the third consecutive year as the exclusive U.S. Spanish-language broadcaster of the MISS UNIVERSE® Competition, one of the most-viewed live events on television each year. Viewers will watch as the 2016 Miss Universe, Iris Mittenaere, crowns her successor. This year’s program also will feature a prime time special “Camino a la Corona” showing behind-the-scenes footage of contestants preparing for their chance at the crown.
NEW SPORTS PROGRAMMING
“Knockout”: “Knockout” is a hard-hitting, U.S.-produced reality series that personalizes the journeys of boxers as students of the sport, while exploring boxing as a 24/7 culture for these dedicated warriors. The show grants viewers complete access into the boxers’ personal and professional lives inside and outside the ring showing them not just as fighters, but as parents, co-workers, friends, and mentors.
“Combate Americas Azteca”: Combate Americas, the premier Hispanic Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) sports franchise, brings live, world-champion MMA events to the U.S. exclusively on Azteca America this year. In addition to monthly 90-minute live specials, the Combate Americas Azteca series includes a weekly hour-long show, starring Alberto Del Río, Andrés Bermúdez, Carlos Aguilar, and Ivette Hernández, about the league’s most exciting fights and prolific young fighters.
“Our 2017-2018 grid builds on the success of our proven counter-programming strategy,” said Black. “Azteca will continue to push the envelope and deliver the most compelling, culturally relevant entertainment to viewers and advertisers alike.”
KANAL D Content Deal
Azteca America has secured an exclusive content partnership with Turkish media giant, KANAL D, for more than 1,000 hours of Turkish drama series. Among the dramas coming to the network are: “For My Son,” a series about an ex-cop tasked to an undercover mission within Istanbul’s biggest mafia, while trying to reunite with his son; “Crossroads,” a drama/comedy series about a rich family that loses everything; and “Matter of Respect,” the story of a son who seeks revenge on the mafia for causing his father’s suicide. The complex, family-oriented storylines, exotic locations, beautiful actors, and high production values of KANAL D’s content are a hit with Hispanic viewers, and this deal brings even more diversity to Azteca’s programming slate.
Returning this upcoming season are prime time favorites:
“Venga la Alegría” is a popular midday entertainment show with segments appealing to all audiences. The show features beauty tips, cooking lessons, games, comedy sketches, and health and nutrition advice presented by hosts Patricio Borghetti, Vanessa Claudio, Ingrid Coronado, Sergio Sepulveda, Tábata Jalil, “El Capi” Pérez, Mariano Sandoval, Ricardo Casares and Natalia Venezuela.
“Ventaneando” continues to be the go-to destination for juicy celebrity news from all over the U.S. and Mexico – exclusively on Azteca. Iconic hostess Pati Chapoy and her team, Atala Sarmiento, Jimena Pérez “La Choco,” Daniel Bisogno, and Pedro Sola, serve up the hottest celebrity coverage. This season brings viewers more exclusive stories, surprising gossip and scandalous secrets!
“Al Extremo” is a newsmagazine show that dares to tell what other television programs will not air. Hosting the show is the distinguished pair Verónica del Castillo and Juan Barragan. Gaby Crassus brings the show's signature thrills to weekends with “Al Extremo Fin de Semana.” “Al Extremo” presents video clips covering a range of extraordinary events caught on tape, from gritty moments to humorous videos depicting life’s lighter times. Tales of human interest, police stories, crime scenes, miraculous events, and the most audacious entertainment news make for an extreme hour of television viewing.
Rafael Mercadante and Adianez Hérnandez host “Escape Perfecto.” A team of two contestants work together to complete trivia and physical challenges to grab prizes from a gigantic cage before the doors slam shut. With increasingly difficult questions for each of the 10 rounds, the team is offered bigger prizes with less time to answer the question correctly. Halfway through, the team will decide whether it wants to escape with the prizes it has, or risk it all for the major prize selected at the beginning of the game.
In its seventh season, “La Isla” is a reality show that pits three groups of contestants against each other. The participants will test their mental and physical strength and their abilities in the battle to determine who will take home the cash prize. Once again, Alejandro Lukini returns as the host, welcoming the participants and accompanying them throughout their journey.
“Pasion Deportiva,” the popular Sunday sports magazine show, returns with hosts Rafael Ayala, Paco González, Pamela, and Ivette Hernández.
“DeportTV,” hosted by Rafael Ayala and Óscar Francisco Cano, brings viewers weekly sports recaps to end the week.
Marco Antonio Morales, Eduardo Lamazón, Julio César Chávez, Rodolfo Vargas, and Carlos Aguilar return to host “Box Azteca,” Azteca’s two-hour-long, weekly, action-packed boxing fights.
Azteca’s longtime program for futbol fanatics, “Los Protagonistas,” covers all the latest sports news – including soccer – from around the world, with hosts Rafael Ayala, Ivette Hernández, and Omar Zerón.
“Lucha Azteca” brings the passion, color, and drama of Mexican wrestling to the Azteca screen every week in a news update format filled with video coverage of the latest matches.
The network also announced two new strategic partnerships with digital/TV programmatic and OTT platform providers, Videology and Zype, as the network continues to expand and streamline its options for advertisers.
Azteca is the first Hispanic network to the market using the Videology platform. Azteca’s clients and advertisers will be able to plan advertising campaigns using Videology’s proprietary software to gain access to Azteca’s inventory and optimize their buying plans programmatically, allowing for advanced targeting capabilities that go beyond the traditional age and gender audience demographics. Through its integration with Nielsen data, Videology’s platform also allows for advertisers to plan, buy and measure their campaigns across TV and digital audiences and to use digital insights to better plan advertising initiatives.
On the OTT front, through its alliance with Zype, Azteca will now be able to publish its original news and entertainment content across every major OTT platform, including Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Roku, smart TVs, Opera TV, Chromecast, and others using Zype’s on-demand software platform. Zype’s platform, which provides in-depth video analytics, will enable Azteca to offer new and more diverse capabilities and insights to its advertisers and partners seeking to expand VOD (Video On Demand) and OTT campaigns.