Telemundo, Weather Channel Partner on New Multi-Platform Initiative (Exclusive)

The deal between the NBCUniversal sister companies will include an array of digital and mobile apps targeting U.S. Hispanics.

A version of this story first appeared in the May 10 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.

Starting in October, Hispanic consumers will be able to check the chance of rain on a custom set of digital and mobile products from Telemundo Media and The Weather Channel Cos. A little more than a year in the planning stages, the partnership between the NBCUniversal sister companies “is an opportunity to zero in on different segments of the market,” says Peter Blacker, executive vp digital media and emerging businesses at Telemundo.

The long-term deal will include customizable apps -- in Spanish or English -- as well as weather-related digital video series featuring Telemundo’s stable of news and entertainment stars that will be distributed on the Telemundo and Weather web and mobile.

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U.S. Hispanics over-index on mobile technology (45 percent of Hispanic mobile phone users have smartphones, compared to 34 percent in the general market). receives more than 5 million monthly unique visits from U.S. Hispanics on the web and more than 6 million uniques on mobile platforms. The bilingual app will allow Hispanics living in the U.S. to get weather reports for their home countries. Adds Blacker: “We look at the duality of the Hispanic consumer. They’re physically here, but sometimes their heart and their family members are in other places.”

Telemundo has been expanding its footprint on TV and online in an attempt to challenge Spanish-language leader Univision. April marked the second consecutive month that Telemundo has out-rated rival CW to become the No. 6-ranked broadcast network in primetime. (Univision is No. 5, though it is not unusual for the network to beat at least one of the big four among younger viewers, particularly on Friday nights.) For the month of April, Telemundo bested CW  in primetime (8-10 p.m.)  among total viewers (1.7 million compared to 1.5 million), adults 18-49 (892,000 to 528,000) and adults 18-34 (423,000 to 255,000).