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TelevisaUnivision’s Spanish-language streaming service ViX has reached more than 25 million monthly active users on its free, advertising-supported tier.
On Thursday, the Spanish-language TV giant, unveiling its fourth-quarter results, also reported a 22 percent rise in overall revenue to $1.5 billion, which included a 10 percent increase in advertising revenue to $849.7 million for the U.S. and Mexico as TelevisaUnivision featured World Cup soccer games.
The latest financial results included a full quarter of ViX subscription revenue that TelevisaUnivision did not break out in sign-ups. ViX launched in July in the U.S., Mexico and Latin America as the largest Spanish-language streaming service worldwide.
The streamer came to market with over 10,000 hours of content, both originals and library content from Univision and Televisa’s pool of programming, and as much as 7,000 hours of live sports, including Liga MX and UEFA Champion’s League soccer.
That ViX launch was preceded in Jan. 2022 by Grupo Televisa merging with Univision Communications to create TelevisaUnivision, the Spanish-language linear TV and streaming giant. During the latest quarter, the combined entity posted a loss of $1.59 billion, compared with a year-earlier loss of $2.4 million.
TelevisaUnivision recorded a $1.66 billion non-cash impairment loss, mainly on its goodwill, driven by “the impact of general market conditions, including comparable market valuations and the rising interest rate environment,” the company said in its results as market conditions impacted its TV broadcast licenses and program rights.
Besides streaming service launch costs, TelevisaUnivision said it expected ViX to reach profitability by the end of this year. “The growth and profitability of our core business more than offset the investments we made in ViX. The power of the combined assets in the U.S. and Mexico cause us to continue to expect ViX to reach profitability by the end of 2023,” Wade Davis, CEO of TelevisaUnivision, said in a statement.
During a morning analyst call, Davis pointed to a “pretty significant uptake” for the ViX streaming service, which is set for a stepped-up launch outside of the U.S. and Mexico, and mainly in Columbia, Peru and the rest of Latin America in 2023.
“Streaming for the global Spanish-language audience is still a relatively wide open lane,” Davis added, in contrast to a highly penetrated U.S. market, without being specific about audience projections. On the linear TV side, the TelevisaUnivision chief insisted his company was working to offset cord-cutting pressures as subscription fee increases and a growth in virtual MPVD subscriber sign ups helped ease the impact of continuing pay TV customer losses.
“We’re confident that we’ll continue to make progress with the virtual MPVDs,” Davis said as the ViX app continues to roll out via content distributors.
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