Si TV Secures Funding From Investors Including EchoStar and Time Warner
LOS ANGELES, April 5 /PRNewswire/ -- In a strong demonstration of support, influential industry leaders including EchoStar Communications Corporation (Nasdaq: DISH), Time Warner Inc. (NYSE: TWX), Syndicated Communications Ventures, Columbia Capital, Rho Ventures, DND Capital Partners, Llano Partners and company co-founder Barshop Ventures have invested over $60 million in Si TV, the English-language Latino-themed network that launched this February in over 7 million homes. Los Angeles-based Si TV, which targets the burgeoning market of 18-34 year-old 2nd and 3rd generation U.S. Latinos, features English-language Latino programming including the latest in music, comedy, drama and fashion. Over 45% of Si TV's programming consists of original shows, such as Urban Jungle, The Rub, Latino Laugh Festival, The Drop and Styleyes. The company has completed affiliation agreements with EchoStar, Time Warner Cable, Comcast and Cox Communications and has launched with charter advertisers Wal-Mart, Sears, General Motors, US Army, Earthlink, Conair, and Sony Music. EchoStar's Senior Vice President of Programming Michael Schwimmer commented, "EchoStar's investment underscores our commitment to innovative programming, and we feel that Si TV meets the needs of the widely underserved English-speaking Latino audience. Their programming has universal appeal and we're happy to make it available to millions of homes." Rachel Lam, Vice President and Group Managing Director for Time Warner Investments said, "Time Warner has been committed to the success of Si TV since its early days. Aiming to extend our support of Si TV, we have now made an equity investment in the network, which builds on our existing affiliation agreement through Time Warner Cable. We are excited about the growth prospects of this innovative network and have great confidence in Si TV's diverse management team and its ability to better serve the Latino audience -- an important market for us." Si TV Co-founder and Chairman Jeff Valdez stated, "The fact that these investors have decided to back Si TV is a confirmation of the interest in English-language programming for Latinos and the multicultural audience which is quickly becoming the new general market." He added, "We could not be more delighted to have the partnership of such a diverse and prestigious group of investors." DND Capital Partners LLC, whose principals Co-Chairmen and Chief Executive Officers Philippe Dauman and Tom Dooley both served as Viacom's Deputy Chairmen, support Si TV's endeavor. "We believe the Latino community is the fastest growing and yet one of the most underserved segments of the viewing audience," said Dauman. "The best concept we have seen to address this need in an exciting and innovative way is Si TV." Citigroup Global Markets Inc. acted as sole placement agent for the transaction. About Si TV Si TV is an English-language, Latino network featuring hip and irreverent culturally relevant programming targeting the growing young Latino and multi-cultural TV audience. Si TV has forged affiliation agreements with Comcast Cable, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications and Grande Communications, while EchoStar's DISH Network has added Si TV to its "America's Top 120" package. Si TV has previously distinguished itself with the production of original programming including "Latino Laugh Festival," "Funny Is Funny!" and Nickelodeon's highly rated and critically acclaimed family comedy "The Brothers Garcia," which made television history as the first English-language sitcom with an all-Latino cast and creative team of writers, directors and producers. Founded and chaired by writer/producer Jeff Valdez and entrepreneur Bruce Barshop, Si TV was established in 1997 as a production company to develop, produce and distribute original English-language, Latino entertainment.
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