How does Denver's TV news ratings leader top itself when it already produces a record 14 newscasts a day?
Add another two, in Spanish.
KUSA-Channel 9 will launch a partnership with Telemundo affiliate KDEN-Channel 25 to produce a Spanish-language newscast this fall that will air on the Telemundo station, weekdays at 5:30 and 10 p.m.
"9News en Espanol," starting Oct. 3, will be produced at Channel 9 using the assets of the NBC affiliate, with bilingual staff from Telemundo. The anchors are yet to be named.
"This has taken several months to work out," said KUSA news director Patti Dennis. "We are just starting the hiring process."
Both Telemundo and KDEN are owned by NBC Universal. In terms of local collaborations, however, this deal is rare. "This is the first joint strategic partnership," Dennis said.
KUSA general manager Mark Cornetta said the partnership will be beneficial to the community and to the stations.
"As our community continues to grow and become more diverse, so too should the newsgathering and storytelling," Cornetta said. "Having the opportunity to work with Telemundo to provide such an opportunity is quite exciting. This partnership is one that truly benefits the community and we are looking forward to growing these newscasts."
Clearly there is a large bilingual Hispanic demographic in Denver, the nation's 15th largest Hispanic market. Univision, the leading Spanish-language network, often tops most of the network affiliates in the 5 p.m. ratings, trailing only KUSA.
The Denver area's Latino population, roughly 20 percent of the market, is growing three times faster than the population as a whole, according to Nielsen Claritas, a market research firm.