As of January 12th, Hispanic and Latino audiences have one more option when they turn on their radios: EN VIVO.
Heralding the slogan “Donde Nace la Musica (Where Music Is Born)”, EN VIVO, mixes chart-topping hits with live performances, and is one of two new Latino/Hispanic radio program offerings from National Latino Broadcasting, LLC (NLB), a media company that looks to develop niche media opportunities across the United States.
Cristina Radio Network, NLB’s other flagship channel, will launch later this month with news, entertainment, health and political programming. Cristina Radio Network is named for media icon Cristina Saralegui, who inked an exclusive deal with NLB earlier this year.
The launch of both EN VIVO and Cristina Radio Network are a part of a two-channel long-term lease deal with Sirius/XM Radio.
As a condition of the 2008 merger between Sirius and XM, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) required the merging entity to add or designate channels that would advance diversity in media ownership. Under the leadership of FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn the diversity requirements were revisited in early 2011 and modified to deemphasize race, and instead focus on the addition of new voices to the market as the criterion. Clyburn was integral in both the NLB deal, as well as deals between Sirius/XM and other new entrants into satellite radio, like Howard University and Prabha Selvadurai’s World Band Media.
The diversification of Sirius/XM’s offerings through this deal is timely considering demographic trends among Hispanic/Latino communities – the largest, youngest and fastest growing minority group in the US. They represent 15.7% of the population with a median age of 27 – compared to a median age of 41 for Caucasians and 32 for African Americans – and account for half of the United States’ total population growth.
Despite these trends, minority media ownership hasn’t kept pace. While minorities comprise 30% of America’s population, they own a mere 7% of radio stations.
While the FCC continues its work to help reduce the barriers to entry for minority media ownership, minorities as a whole still lack sufficient access to capital to purchase and operate radio stations.
Through partnerships with satellite super-powers like Sirius/XM, NLB and other minority programmers can reach their intended audiences more quickly without having to navigate the travails of owning and operating a broadcast radio station.
NLB President and CEO Nelson Albareda says of the two-channel deal, “we have done it. A dream has become a reality not just for me and for the talented team that has dedicated countless hours getting everything ready for this day, but the dream also becomes a reality for all Hispanics.”
“We are convinced that EN VIVO will become a favorite for Hispanics and non-Hispanics alike looking for a channel where Latin music is more than a preference; it is a lifestyle,” he continued.
With the Sirius/XM deal, the NLB becomes the first independent Hispanic-owned media company in the satellite radio business.
“The new suite of channels, including the most comprehensive Latin programming lineup, makes our combined offering of English and Spanish audio entertainment second to none,” Sirius/XM Mel Karmazin CEO said in October with regards to his company’s moves to serve more of its Hispanic/Latino subscribers.
EN VIVO broadcasts from its headquarters in Miami, but has also secured partnerships with studios in New York and Los Angeles through which its live concerts and special programming will be aired.
“The sheer diversity of genres within this music makes the programming possibilities truly exciting and our partnership with The Latin Recording Academy® makes this endeavor unique and unprecedented,” President Albareda adds.
Through the partnership with the Latin Recording Academy, the non-profit responsible for the Latin GRAMMYs each year, EN VIVO will also be airing daily content related to the annual awards show, historical material from its archives and will be the official satellite radio partner for the GRAMMY’s and its related events.
NLB will have varied program offerings such as Tu Manana Live, a bilingual morning talk show; The Mash Up, a mix of today’s hits in Spanish and English chosen by world-renowned DJs; Concierto EN VIVO, where listeners can experience the best concerts from around the world; and Club EN VIVO, live broadcasts from the nation’s hottest clubs. EN VIVO airs on Sirius/XM channel 147.
For more information on National Latino Broadcasting, LLC, visit their website at http://www.nlblive.com/