43. Grupo Televisa
Revenues 2017: € 4.390 billion
The Mexican media company Televisa dominates the television market of the largest Spanish-speaking country in the world with a reach of 60 to 85 percent off all households. Its telenovelas are exported into more than 75 countries. Televisa is owned by three families and known to be on good terms with the authorities. As far as Mexico is concerned, electronic media is the communication platform of choice. Thanks to the lack of distribution networks and a high rate of illiteracy, Mexico's newspaper culture is restricted to areas of high density population. Televisa and its competitor TV Azteca hold 90 percent of the commercial broadcasting concession within the highly concentrated Mexican broadcasting market between them. Smaller public culture stations and other, non-commercial & regional radios don't play a significant part in constituting a counterpoise to the two big names in the business.
Avenida Vasco de Quiroga, No. 2000,
Colonia Santa Fe,
01210 México, D.F.,
Legal Form: Stock Corporation
Financial Year: 01/01 – 12/31
Founding Year: 1973
|Profit after taxes||5,333||12,325 MXN||377||603||596||473,17||459.06||350.2||536.8||572.6||627.3|
*For exchange rate MXN-EUR see: Bundesbank
Executives and Directors
- Emilio Fernando Azcarraga Jean, Executive Vice President
- Alfonso De Angoitia Noriega, President
- Jose Antonio Baston Patino, President, Televisa International
- Bernardo Gomez Martinez, Executive Vice President
- Salvi Folch Viadero, CFO
- Joaquin Balcarel Santa Cruz, General Counsel
- Adolfo Lagos, Corporate Vice President of Telecommunications
- Isaac Lee, Chief Content Officer
- Alexandre Penna, CEO of Sky
- Ricardo Perez Teuffer, Corporate Vice President of Sales and Marketing
- Alicia Lebrija, Executive President Fundacion Televisa
Board of Directors:
- Emilio Fernando Azcarraga Jean, Televisa
- Alfonso De Angoitia Noriega, Televisa
- Alberto Bailleres Gonzalez, Industrias Penoles
- Julio Barba Hurtado, Televisa
- Jose Antonio Baston Patino, Televisa
- Francisco Jose Chevez Robelo, Televisa
- Jon Feltheimer, Lionsgate
- Jose Antonio Fernandez Carbajal, FEMSA
- Jose Luis Fernandez Fernandez, Chevez, Ruiz, Zamarripa y Cia, S.C.
- Salvi Rafael Folch Viadero, Televisa
- Michael Thomas Fries, Liberty Global
- Bernardo Gomez Martinez, Televisa
- Roberto Hernandez Ramirez, Banco Nacional de Mexico
- Enrique Krauze Kleinbort, Editorial Clio Libros
- Jorge Agustin Lutteroth Echegoyen, Televisa
- Lorenzo Alejandro Mendoza Gimenez, Empresas Polar
- Fernando Senderos Mestre, Grupo Kuo
- Enrique F.Senior Hernandez, Allen & Company
- Eduardo Tricio Haro, Grupo Lala
- David M. Zaslav, Discovery Communications
When the Mexican television system came into being in the 1940s, there had been no efforts to create a strong public division alongside any eventual private broadcasters, a situation that mirrored the radio system exactly. Decisions were made to focus on US-American standards both for technology and the organisation of the broadcasting department. The broadcasting laws of 1960 and 1973 included the most important regulations to which Televisa had to adhere to from 1973 onwards. Among other things, broadcasting in general was considered a public commodity. Televisa emerged from a merger between Telesistema and Televisión Independente de México (TIM). The former monopolist Telesistema brought 75 % to the table. The newly formed company was owned by four families, who had become rich and famous through broadcasting companies and invested the takings in the construction of television networks: The Azcárragas, O´Farrills, Alemáns and the Garza Sadas.
The members of the families took on the key roles at Televisa. An agreement was made with the rather unimportant competition in the form of the national 'Kanal 13' over the partitioning of the television channels in regards to target audiences, the so-called 'Fórmula Mexicana'. Now, the public station was left with the economically tricky challenge to broadcast educational programs. Hence, the conditions for Televisa as a media organisation within that specific framework were exceptionally good and played their part in the station's rise to be become an international media giant in the next decades.
To Mexico however, the station's exposed status resulted in an uniform mess as far as broadcasting culture was concerned – not least due to the Telenovelas, which were first produced in Mexico. The Televisa cherished its friendship with the Mexican president, all of whom had been members of the PRI Party up to 2000. As a service in return for the media-political protection, the company dedicated its program to servicing and advocating the governing party. “For a long time indeed, Televisa and PRI were considered the two major nodes of power in the nation, supporting and nourishing each other”, wrote the Austrian magazine 'The Standard' and quotes Televisa-boss Azcárraga, the father of the current CEO Azcárraga Jean: “We are from the PRI, we always were from the PRI; and we pay no heed to any other options. As a member of the party we will do all that lies in our power to make sure that our candidate comes out on top.” Vicente Fox's party, the PAN, which took over the helm in 2000 when PRI lost the elections, could rely on a pro-governmental television philosophy, effectively preventing a dissolution of the monopoly situation in the broadcasting market. The company became the largest media company in Latin-America, present in all media branches and broadcasting, from print to online.
In 2007, a verdict by the Mexican constitutional court put an end to a year-long dispute regarding a new media law for the 100-million-citizen strong nation. The court was called upon by senators who feared a cementation of the high concentration on the broadcasting market due to the 'Televisa Law' (the name given to the telenovela). The Televisa company apparently took advantage of Mexico's political class' high dependency on media coverage during the elections in 2006 and made sure the media law would be passed unnoticed. According to observers, the process happened in a suspiciously swift amount of time considering the affected institutions usual slowness. Another rumour circulated, claiming that the text had been penned by Televisa lobbyists. The proposed law triggered a heated debate on whether it would solve or just increase problems in frequency allocation. The former process, which gave the president the right to distribute the 'public commodity' that were frequencies, made it possible for Televisa to ensure its dominant position in the first place. Now, the outdated process was supposed to make way for a new regulation, according to which nine frequencies would be the subject of an auction. At the same time, the law constituted that the TV channels would practically own and control their respective frequencies, even if they would vacate as a result of digital dividends. Hence, the second-largest private network, TV Azteca, also supported the 'Ley Televisa'. When the proposed law was passed in unison by the lower house, the resistance in the second chamber of the Mexican parliament (Home to the senate) became organised and filed a complaint of unconstitutionality. The highest court of law was facing the enormous pressure of the public sphere, not least due to the Televisa-programs. What happened next was an unusual step indeed and the trial was made as public and transparent as possible, broadcasting it via the court's own television channel and the Internet. By means of this 'Court TV' (“ The Economist”), the court gained enough support to pass an independent judgement. By doing this, the court also strengthened its position in Mexico's institutional matrix.
In October 2010, Televisa put an end to the 30-percent involvement in the mobile network provider Nextel, which had only been announced by the company a few months before. Nextel, a subsidiary of the US-American company NII, agreed to the split. In July 2010, the joint-venture won it at an auction of mobile broadcasting frequencies by the Mexican government. This resulted in claims by the competitors, which claimed the auction was not carried out under fair conditions and circumstances. Shortly before the termination of the cooperation between Televisa and Nextel, a judge had stopped the usage of the frequency in question with an injunction.
In April 2011, Televisa announced that it would buy 50 percent of the mobile provider Iusacell, part of the TV-Azteca-owner Ricardo Salinas group. Televisa paid a total of 1,6 billion US Dollar for the transaction. The company stated that it expects a green light from the regulation authority within six months.
With the convergence of television, phone and Internet (Triple Play), Televisa (as well as its major competitor TV Azteca) increasingly crosses swords with Carso, the company holding of the entrepreneur Carlos Slim. Slim's subsidiary Telmex dominates the Mexican telephone market. Slim also entertains the idea of entering the pay-TV market, something that the regulation authority in question forbade, citing Telmex's roaming policies as the reason. At the same time, Televisa and TV Azteca attempt to extend their respective market share of the Mexican mobile market. In January 2011, the two companies filed a complaint with the cartel office, claiming that Telmex would circumnavigate the anti-trust regulations due to its cooperation with the satellite TV provider Dish Mexico. Telmex promptly reacted to the accusation in spring 2011 and announced it would cease to broadcast adverts on Televisa and TV Azteca. In July 2011, Slim finally cancelled its advertising during Televisa-programs and the stock of the latter was subjected to severe pressure as a result of this action – In 2010, Slim's companies generated approximately 3,8 percent of Televisa's advertising revenue.
By the end of 2010, Televisa and the NY-based Univision confirmed their business relations and extended a cooperation for the shared usage of program licenses to 2025. The agreement will have Televisa investing 1,2 billion US-Dollar in Univision for which it will receive at least a five-percent share in return. Televisa-CEP Azcárraga Jean and Executive Vice President Angoitia Noriega will also be members of the board of directors at Univision. Televisa might be involved in Univision, but due to US-American laws, it cannot hold more than 25% of shares.
The majority of the Televisa shares are still held by the Azcárraga family. Emilio Azcárraga Jean is the president, chairman and CEO of the company, a grand-child of the Televisa trailblazer Emilio Azcárraga Vidaurrete. Azcárraga Jean, born in 1968, studied international relations at the Ibero-American university of Mexico City and business studies at the private elite university of IPADE. According to the US-Magazine 'Forbes' he has a fortune of 1,7 billion US-Dollar and a 15% share of Televisa-stocks. 'Forbes' also claims that he tried to gain American citizenship in 2006 in order to acquire even more of the US-spin-off Univision. During the bidding war for Univision, Televisa eventually lost out to the former ProSiebenSat.1 owner Haim Saban. Azcárraga Jean has been working for Televisa since 1988 and took over the company leadership in 1999, two years after the death of his father. He began introducing modern management structures in the rather paternally coloured company and subjected the logo (an orange-blue eye) to a re-design. In his first years as head of the company, the early demise of the 'Dot-Com-Boom' caused him a few headaches, but in the last few years, revenue and profit increased quite considerably due to Azcárraga Jean's expansion course. (see the table under General Information).
The Televisa television empire includes 258 broadcasting stations. Hence, the Televisa programs are broadcasted over more than half of all licensed TV stations in Mexico. The most important program is Canal 2, a nation-wide Free-TV-station. Furthermore, the company operates Canal 4, 5 and 9. The only competitor of Televisa that is worth mentioning would be TV Azteca, founded in 1993. There are no means of determining the exact ratings in Mexico, however, the most popular programs are Televisa's comedy programs and the telenovela. The cable television subsidiary Cablevision, which is also a phone and Internet provider, operates the largest Mexican cable television network. Furthermore, Televisa is active on the very dynamic Mexican pay TV market too. In the years 1998 to 2003, the share of pay TV subscribers doubled from 8% to 16%. Televisa owns 58,7% of the Innova shares, which runs the SKY Pay TV station. (Innova is a joint venture with DirecTV in which News Corporation is also involved [News Corp. in the Media database] )
The Pay TV market in Mexico is not as highly concentrated as the freely receivable television market but a considerable counterbalance to the power of Televisa and TV Azteca's opinion-making machinery is nowhere in sight.
Radio in Mexico is a medium with a huge range. The licenses that are necessary for the operation of a broadcasting station are divided in commercial and non-commercial concessions. Many programs are created by cultural institutions or universities. Televisa Radio operates 17 stations via its Radiópolis subsidiary and is also involved in a total of 80 stations. Hence, Televisa Radio is heard by 70% of Mexicans.
The Videocine spin-off produces and distributes films in Mexico and the USA..
Editorial Televisa is one of the largest publishing houses for Spanish-speaking press products. It publishes magazines in 20 countries in both North and South America. The company-intern distribution network Intermex owns 105000 selling points in Latin-America. 25000 of which are based in Mexico.
Televisa Digital is responsible for online and mobile services and operates the Internet gateway website Esmas.com, offering videos, chats, forums and email-services (amongst other things). Esmas movil provides services all about mobile phones, such as ringtones and games. Last but not least, the company also operates the EsmasTV videoportal.
Televisa Home Entertainment produces and distributes the TV and film production of the company on DVD. The company is also active on the music market with the Televisa Musica company. Furthermore, the licensing division markets all Televisa-brands. Televisa distributed content into more than 100 countries all over the world. Football is one of the Televisa-CEO Azcárraga Jean's big passions and therefore, Televisa owns three teams as well as the famous Aztec-stadium in Mexico City.
the Open Society Foundations' Media Program,
Germany's Federal Agency for Civic Education,
the Rudolf Augstein Foundation,
the city of Cologne, Germany,
and the State of Thuringia, Department of Commerce.