Telemundo Puerto Rico (TV channel)

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This article is about the cable channel. For the Puerto Rican terrestrial television station that is also called "Telemundo Puerto Rico", see WKAQ-TV.
Telemundo Puerto Rico
Launched December 1994
Owned by NBCUniversal
Picture format 480i (SDTV)
Country Puerto Rico
Language Spanish
Broadcast area National
Formerly called Telenoticias (1994–1996)
CBS TeleNoticias (1996–2000)
Sister channel(s) Telemundo, mun2,
Syfy Latin America, Syfy Spain
Available on select cable systems Check local listings for channels

Telemundo Puerto Rico (also known as Telemundo Internacional) is an Latin American basic cable television channel, which operates as a superstation feed of San Juan, Puerto Rico television station WKAQ-TV. It is owned by NBCUniversal.



Telemundo Internacional began in December 1994 as Telenoticias, Latin America's second 24-hour news channel that did not broadcast from the region (NBC's Canal de Noticias NBC, launched March 15, 1993.[1] from Charlotte, North Carolina, was the first). It was based out of Miami, Florida. During the mid-1990s, Telenoticias was owned jointly by Reuters (42%), Telemundo (42%), Grupo Clarín (8%, Argentina) and Antena 3 (8%,[1] Spain), and it broadcast in Spanish and Portuguese. From the beginning, the group's several owners did not have a smooth relationship.

Some American stations carried programs from the channel, such as KUBD in Denver; WSNS in Chicago; and KQBN in Tucson.[2] Anchors during this time included Marian De La Fuente, Jose Gray, Carlos Maria Ruiz, Rodrigo Vera, Pablo Gato, and Susana Roza Vigil.

CBS TeleNoticias logo used from 1997 to 2000.

In late June 1996, CBS bought out the network, marking its first cable venture. By this point, the channel was broadcast to 20 million homes in 22 countries.[3] In 1997, it was rebranded CBS Telenoticias. The Telemundo network struck a deal, buying two newscasts from the company and airing them at 6:30 and 10:00 p.m. The network also was able to utilize the CBS Newspath news feed to supplement its content as well. The company used the CBS Newspath headquarters in Washington, D.C. to house a small crew of reporters. The network launched in the United States in 1997[4] with a service that emphasized the United States, Caribbean, and Mexico; featured two issues-focused talk shows; and launched, unluckily, on the same date as CNN en Español.

In late 1997, CBS TeleNoticias began providing news programs to Radio Unica, which launched in December of that year as the first national Spanish-language radio network in the United States.[5]


The Brazilian version of the channel, a 14-hour-a-day operation, launched in 1997 (under the slightly different CBS Telenotícias title), and gained a coup early on by striking a deal with Jornal do SBT to share resources. But Net Brasil, a major joint venture cable company owned by major media companies in that country, refused to carry the channel, possibly due to a preference for Globo's news channel instead.[6] In addition, the launch of the channel had already been forced into a delay because the satellite it was to be carried on, PanAmSat 5 (launched in August 1997), became operational only on October 12, and cable operators were receiving satellite dishes to carry the channel off the satellite later than expected.

1998: Sale, bankruptcy, and sale[edit]

In the first quarter of 1998 alone, Telenoticias and Eye on People lost $9 million combined.[7] In late 1998, CBS sold 70% of the channel to Mexican-based Grupo Medcom, a concern operated by the Serna family, as the former continued to provide the news resources; it also sold its stake in Eye on People. By July 1999, some phones at one of its bureaus were disconnected; paychecks came late; and reimbursements were never paid out. It laid off 77 people at the end of the month, then filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy days later.[8] Despite such a bankruptcy filing, it has gained a few low-powered television affiliates such as K19BW (now KLEG-CD) in Dallas.

CBS sold its stake in Telenoticias to then-Telemundo owners Sony Pictures Entertainment and Liberty Media in early 2000 for the price of $2.35 million as approved by federal bankruptcy court.[9] With the new owners, the network changed its name to Telemundo Internacional.

As Telemundo Internacional and Puerto Rico[edit]

The 24-hour news service was restructured into a bilingual entertainment channel airing programs from the Telemundo network and mun2, with some shows produced by Telemundo Internacional, such as Hoy en América and América en vivo and four newscasts, some of which were rebroadcast on Telemundo. Senior anchor Marian de la Fuente was the last anchor to serve while being the managing editor. In 2005, news programming on the channel was cut back and the mun2 shows were dropped. The channel started to broadcast some older telenovelas produced by Colombian company RTI, which maintained a content partnership with Telemundo as a whole.

Despite losing viewers when Dish Network replaced the channel with CNN En Español, the network continued until early in 2006, when the Telemundo network decided to reformat the channel as Telemundo Puerto Rico in order to compete with WAPA-TV, which was launching a national superstation feed. That same year, Dish Network added Telemundo Puerto Rico back to its lineup on channel 837; as of 2013, the channel is once again no longer available on Dish Network.

Later that year, NBC Universal, the current owner of Telemundo Puerto Rico, announced a restructuring plan (known as NBCU 2.0) to cut costs and jobs.[10] The morning, afternoon and weekend editions of Telenoticias were dropped by WKAQ-TV (and in effect, Telemundo Puerto Rico) on December 1, 2006.

Programming on Telemundo Puerto Rico[edit]

Telemundo Puerto Rico is also a collaboration with WKAQ-TV (channel 2) in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The channel airs WKAQ-produced newscasts under the following schedule:

  • Telenoticias 5 p.m. – weeknights from 5 to 6 p.m.
  • Telenoticias 10 p.m. – weeknights from 10 to 10:30 p.m.
  • Telenoticas 11 a.m. - weekdays from 11am to 12:00pm

Telemundo Puerto Rico also airs a 60-minute gossip and analysis program Dando Candela; a 90-minute midday entertainment program Dia a Dia and a half-hour cooking show called Operación Chef.

One oddity about Telemundo Puerto Rico is that it airs no traditional advertisements; instead, breaks feature 90% public service announcements, 5% promos for Telemundo Puerto Rico programs, and the remaining 5% devoted to a Puerto Rico video travelogue.


  1. ^ a b "Westinghouse Seeks Purchase". New York Times 24 May 1996: 6.
  2. ^ Elliott, Robert. "TV news station geared for upper-income Hispanics." Inside Tucson Business 15 April 1996: 12-13.
  3. ^ Hall, Lee. "TeleNoticias buy puts CBS into cable." Electronic Media 1 July 1996: 1-2.
  4. ^ Hall, Lee. "TeleNoticias plans U.S. launch." Electronic Media 10 March 1997: 44.
  5. ^ Zbar, Jeffery. "U.S.' first national Spanish radio net readied for launch." Advertising Age 29 September 1997: 56.
  6. ^ Galetto, Mike. "Brazil squeeze for TeleNoticias." Electronic Media 24 November 1997: 8-9.
  7. ^ "At press time." Electronic Media 4 May 1998: 1-2.
  8. ^ Trigoboff, Dan. "Telenoticias files Chapter 11." Broadcasting and Cable 2 August 1999: 7.
  9. ^ Sutter, Mary. "Telemundo buys CBS/Telenoticias." Daily Variety 2 February 2000: 4.
  10. ^ [1]

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