|Type||Digital broadcast television network
(general entertainment programming)
|Availability||Nationwide via OTA digital television
(covering 73% of the U.S.)
|Founded||April 4, 2011
by Martin Luther King III and Andrew Young
|Slogan||TV Our Way|
|Owner||Bounce Media LLC|
|Ryan Glover (president)
Jonathan Katz (chief operating officer)
|September 26, 2011|
(transmitted in either 16:9 widescreen or 4:3 letterbox)
|Affiliates||List of affiliates|
Bounce TV is an American digital multicast television network that is owned by Bounce Media, LLC. Promoted as "the first 24/7 digital multicast broadcast network created exclusively for African Americans," the channel features a mix of original and acquired programming geared toward blacks and African Americans between 25 and 54 years of age. The network is affiliated with broadcast television stations in several markets through digital subchannels, and is also available on the digital tiers of select cable providers at the discretion of a local affiliate.
The network was founded on April 4, 2011, and is majority owned and operated by African Americans. The founding group and initial ownership team included Andrew Young (a former Atlanta mayor and Ambassador to the United Nations), Martin Luther King III and Andrew "Bo" Young III; the group also includes Rob Hardy and Will Packer, co-founders of Rainforest Films, a top African-American production company. The "Bounce TV" name was chosen as a branding avenue to signify that the network is "going somewhere with energy".
The network formally launched on September 26, 2011 at 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time, with the 1978 musical film The Wiz as its inaugural broadcast (the film, starring Diana Ross and Michael Jackson, continues to be a staple movie on the network); other programming on Bounce TV during its first day on the air included showings of the movies A Raisin in the Sun and Do the Right Thing.
Bounce TV features programming geared toward an African American audience that skews older than the demographic that its cable competitor BET primarily targets (adults between the ages of 25 and 54, compared to BET's target demographic of youths and adults ages 12 to 34). Bounce TV's programming primarily features a mix of acquired series and feature films. Off-network television series on the network include a mix of game shows, talk, court and children's series (such as Forgive or Forget, Catch 21, Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids, the Sherri Shepherd era of The Newlywed Game, Judge Faith and The American Bible Challenge); the network added its first acquired sitcoms in January 2015, when it acquired the rights to four series through deals with Warner Bros. Television Distribution, Carsey–Warner Distribution and 20th Television (The Parent 'Hood, Roc, A Different World and The Hughleys).
Unlike most digital multicast services (particularly with the January 2015 shutdown of Live Well Network, which mainly carried first-run content), Bounce TV also carries original programming. The network added originally-produced inspirational and music programming, documentaries and specials to its lineup in 2012, beginning with the broadcast television premiere of the documentary Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: A Historical Perspective on January 16, 2012, in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Bounce TV's first original weekly series debuted on June 18, 2012, with the series premieres of the sitcom Family Time and the stand-up comedy series Uptown Comic.
In addition, shortly before its launch, Bounce TV reached an agreement with the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (a league that includes several historically black colleges and universities) to acquire the television rights to broadcast its football and basketball games; the telecasts were produced by Urban Sports Entertainment Group. The first sports broadcast on Bounce TV aired on September 28, 2011, a college football game between Bowie State University and Virginia Union University. Bounce's HBCU-centered sports programming expanded in 2013 to include games from the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. Sports programming on the network ceased prior to the 2014 season (with Aspire acquiring the rights to some of the HBCU football telecasts).
As of December 2014, Bounce TV has current or pending affiliation agreements with television stations in 43 media markets encompassing 22 states and the District of Columbia, covering 73% of all households of at least television set in the United States and 90% of African-American households. The network encourages its affiliates to carry local news programming in place of regular programming on the Bounce-affiliated subchannel, as a way to attract additional viewers to that subchannel and serve the local market. Affiliates also broadcast local public affairs programs, political specials and college football and basketball games played by predominantly black schools.
Before its launch, Bounce TV actively sought affiliation agreements with various television station owners to make the network widely available throughout the United States. The network launched with clearance rate of, at minimum, 32% of overall American television households, in part due to affiliation agreements with stations owned by Raycom Media, LIN TV Corporation and the Nexstar Broadcasting Group.
In November 2011, Bounce TV reached a groupwide affiliation deal with Fox Television Stations to carry the network on the subchannels of its MyNetworkTV owned-and-operated stations in markets such as New York City (WWOR-TV) and Los Angeles (KCOP). The deal, which marked Fox Television Station's first multicasting arrangement, put Bounce TV over its earlier stated goal of reaching at least 50% of overall U.S. television households.
In December 2012, the network signed a multi-station agreement with Spanish language broadcaster Univision Communications to carry its programming on seven of its Univision and Telefutura owned-and-operated television stations (besides being the company's first multicasting agreement, it was also Univision Television Group's first affiliation deal involving an English language network). As part of an extension of this agreement in March 2014, Bounce TV will move its affiliation in five markets where it had existing affiliation deals with Fox at the time of the deal (New York City, Los Angeles, Dallas–Fort Worth, Orlando and Phoenix) to stations owned by Univision in 2015.
- Escape – an American digital broadcast network owned by Katz Broadcasting (founded by Bounce Media LLC COO Jonathan Katz), specializing in feature films and true crime programming aimed at women
- Grit – an American digital broadcast network owned by Katz Broadcasting, specializing in action and western feature films and series aimed at men
- LAFF - an American digital broadcast network owned by Katz Broadcasting, specializing in comedy.
- Black Entertainment Television – an American basic cable and satellite network owned by Viacom, which launched in 1980 as the first television network devoted to programming targeting the African-American community
- TV One – an American digital cable and satellite network jointly owned by Radio One and Comcast, specializing in original and acquired television series and films aimed at African-Americans
- Aspire – an American digital cable and satellite network owned by Magic Johnson, featuring original and acquired programming aimed at younger African-American audiences
- Jon Lafayette (December 16, 2014). "Bounce TV Acquires First Four Off-Net Series". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved December 27, 2014.
Bounce TV is available in 73% of the U.S. and 90% of African American homes.
- Molloy, Tim (September 25, 2011). "Black-Oriented Bounce TV Begins, Betting on Classic Movies". The Wrap. Retrieved September 30, 2014.
- Jessell, Harry (May 10, 2011). "Bounce Set To Jump Into the Multicast Game". TV News Check. Retrieved September 30, 2014.
- Lafayette, Jon (August 24, 2011). "EXCLUSIVE: 'The Wiz' Will Lead Off Bounce TV Programming". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved September 5, 2011.
- "Bounce TV Airing Martin Luther King Documentary". TV News Check. January 11, 2012.
- "Bounce TV To Premiere First Two Original Series". TV News Check. June 14, 2012.
- Diana Marszalek (July 23, 2013). "News Finds A New Home Among Diginets". TVNewsCheck. Retrieved August 16, 2014.
- Mark Miller (May 23, 2011). "LIN Deal Means More Markets for Bounce TV". TVNewsCheck. Retrieved September 30, 2014.
- Jon Lafayette (June 6, 2011). "Bounce Gets Boost From Nexstar Stations". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved September 30, 2014.
- "Bounce TV Lands on Fox MNT in NYC, LA". TV News Check. November 3, 2011. Retrieved September 30, 2014.
- Goldsmith, Jill (December 10, 2012). "Univision pacts with BounceTV". Variety. Retrieved March 4, 2014.
- Lafayette, Jon (March 4, 2014). "Exclusive: Bounce TV Extends Univision Deal". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved March 4, 2014.