Univision changing upfront presentation

Net will have small sessions closed to the media

Spanish-language TV network Univision is changing the format for presenting its new program lineup for the 2009-10 season to advertisers and agencies during this year's upfront.

In lieu of a large gathering in New York in May, the network will meet with smaller groups of advertisers and agencies throughout April in cities including Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, Dallas and New York. Those sessions will be closed to the media.

Other networks began tweaking their upfront presentation formats last season to make them more businesslike and cost efficient. NBC, for example, held a series of smaller prime-time meetings -- dubbed the "In Front" -- in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles starting in April before holding a larger gathering in New York in May. NBC plans to repeat that process this year. CBS last year held its traditional upfront presentation but cut out the postpresentation gala.

Explaining the five-city road trip approach, David Lawenda, president of advertising sales and marketing for Univision, said, This Upfront season we are on a mission to connect with every marketer and help them see what they are missing if they are not tapping the economic power of this fast growing consumer group."

He added: "In this financially challenging environment, the Hispanic consumer may be the only bright spot poised to deliver growth marketers can count on today."

For more coverage, check out AdweekMedia Upfront 2009