Telemundo adds products unit

It will launch branded initiatives in jewelry, sports, furnishings

Telemundo, the Spanish-language TV operation owned by NBC Universal, has launched a licensing and consumer products unit. As part of this, it has also signed agreements with three initial licensing partners: the Richline Group, IDT Telecom and Arrow Home Fashions to develop lines of jewelry, prepaid calling cards and home fashions, respectively.

The licensing effort is designed to position the network as a "lifestyle brand" for the U.S. Hispanic market. The products that it will offer are geared toward an audience that is loyal and passionate about their programming, the network said.

"Producing and owning our own original content opens up countless opportunities to serve, engage and entertain our audiences," said Don Browne, president, Telemundo. "One of the unique aspects of our business model is our audience's interactive participation with Telemundo's content. This is an exceptional opportunity for Telemundo and our audiences, because we've brought the best creative minds in the business together to create an exciting line of Telemundo-inspired products.

In the coming weeks, Telemundo will launch branded initiatives in jewelry, sports and home furnishings, with other categories including fashion and apparel, per the network.

The first to launch will be a Telemundo jewelry line (fine and costume) tied to network novelas such as "El Clon" and "La Reina del Sur." Beginning April 12, merchandise will be unveiled at www.telemundo.com and, later in 2010, via home shopping and retail channels. The first line of Richline Group, Inc. jewelry will debut on the popular novela, "El Clon" this month.

Telemundo will also offer prepaid calling cards to Mexico and Latin America, which will feature the network's soccer franchise, "Futbol Estelar." The IDT Telecom prepaid calling cards will be carried exclusively in 7-Eleven stores nationwide. (The calling cards will be available in 7-Elevens in the next few weeks).

Telemundo viewers will soon be able to purchase bath, bedding and home furnishings for adults and children. The full line of home decor products by Arrow Home Fashions, will include fashion bedding, window treatments, bath accessories, towels and table linens tied to the network's established brand names including Mujer de Hoy and Futbol Estelar. The home decor products will launch this Fall.

"Our entry into the licensing and consumer products market further solidifies Telemundo as a full-fledged, true lifestyle brand," added Jacqueline Hernandez, COO, Telemundo. "Hispanic consumers recognize and trust our brands, which allow us to be able to offer our brand equity and association on relevant product lines."
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