Telemundo announced a strategic reorganization of its Telemundo Studios operations. Don Browne, President of Telemundo, announced that the network has forged exclusive development and production relationships with industry executives Marcos Santana and Patricio Wills, who will now report directly to him. Derek Bond, Executive Vice President Telemundo Studios, will continue to oversee the Studios production operations.
Browne also announced a realignment of responsibilities at the senior management level in network programming, sports and news, and network strategy, by appointing Ramon Escobar, Senior Executive Vice President Network Entertainment, Jorge Hidalgo, Senior Executive Vice President Sports and News, and Antoinette Zel, Senior Executive Vice President Network Strategy. In addition, Steve Mandala, Senior Vice President Sales and Marketing, Telemundo and NBC Universal Networks, will now also oversee all Telemundo affiliates.
In making these announcements Browne says: “By strengthening Telemundo Studios with Patricio’s and Marcos’ talent and experience, we have assembled the best team of television executives in the industry to help us define Telemundo’s future for years to come. Telemundo is now poised to deliver on the promises we made to provide the highest quality content, improve our execution and achieve higher network performance. In addition, we are very excited to announce that we are committing to increasing our production level in Mexico, led by our experienced production partner, Epigmenio Ibarra.”
Jointly leading all initiatives at Telemundo Studios, Wills and Santana will be responsible for expanding development processes and maximizing quality and efficiency in production, in order to enhance the network’s programming strategy. Together with the network programming team, Wills and Santana will work closely with Ibarra in Mexico to increase the network’s production levels in that strategic market.
In addition to his responsibilities as President and Chief Operating Officer of Tepuy International, Santana will assume overall responsibility of the development process at Telemundo Studios for all genres, including developing original concepts, procuring scripts, making casting decisions and assessing international distribution viability. Santana founded Tepuy, an internationally renowned programming distributor of novelas, series and reality shows. Having represented companies such as Caracol, Endemol, Gest Music and Promofilm, among many others, Santana has also successfully led co-production projects with some of the major production companies in the world.
As President of Telemundo’s Miami-based joint venture with Colombia’s Radio Television Interamericana (RTI), Wills will expand his responsibilities to oversee all current network productions, including those in Mexico and Colombia, as well any third party co-productions. Wills will also be responsible for producing pilots, presenting final packages to the network entertainment executives and managing all production budgets. With almost three decades of television production experience, Wills partnered with Telemundo in 2003, after building RTI Colombia into one of the most important independent Spanish-language television producers in Latin America.
An accomplished journalist and television producer, Ibarra, President of Argos Comunicacion, will work with Telemundo’s network entertainment and production teams, to oversee the network’s growing commitment in Mexico. Having revolutionized the novela genre in that market with novelas like Mirada de Mujer and El Alma Herida, Ibarra has also produced numerous documentaries and feature films.
As Senior Executive Vice President Network Entertainment, Escobar, previously Executive Vice President Programming and Production will continue to report to Browne and oversee network programming strategy (prime time, daytime, weekend, alternative and specials programming) and talent relations. Having been instrumental in developing and implementing Telemundo’s original programming strategy, Escobar will now supervise all programming decisions, closely interfacing with Santana and Wills in their new roles, as well as the Research and the Marketing departments, to achieve network goals.
Sports and News
As Senior Executive Vice President Sports and News, Jorge Hidalgo, who currently oversees the network sports department, all network sports programs and events, and afternoon entertainment show Cotorreando as Executive Vice President of Sports, will now expand his responsibilities to supervise the network’s news division. In his new role, Hidalgo will be in charge of all original news programming including De Mananita, Al Rojo Vivo con Maria Celestè and Sin Fronteras, as well as Telemundo’s Los Angeles and Mexico bureaus. The new joint structure will leverage Hidalgo’s proven track record and extensive broadcast experience in production, talent development and event programming, in order to increase efficiencies and further the goals of both departments.
As part of the Sports and News reorganization, Joe Peyronnin, Executive Vice President of News and Information, will now report to Hidalgo. Peyronnin, created the first news division wholly owned by Telemundo, which has since become a powerful force in Spanish language television, and he developed and launched several successful news broadcasts for the network.
As Senior Executive Vice President Network Strategy, Antoinette Zel who most recently acted as Executive Vice President of Cable Networks and Network Strategic Planning, will now expand her responsibilities to lead additional strategic departments for the Telemundo network and the Cable Group such as Marketing, including Advertising and Promotions; Digital Media, all network Research, the network’s West Coast and Mexico initiatives, along with all other organic growth initiatives. She will continue to oversee all Telemundo Cable Networks, which include Mun2, Telemundo Puerto Rico and Telemundo Internacional for Latin America.
Network Sales and Marketing
Steve Mandala, Senior Vice President Sales and Marketing, Telemundo and NBC Universal Networks, will now also oversee all Telemundo affiliates. Ann Gaulke, SVP Affiliate Relations, will now report to Mandala.