Comcast Adds Two New Black Owned Channels, Launching in January
MultiChannel reports that beginning in January 2019, Comcast will launch two black-owned channels, Afro and Cleo Tv. The services are part of a deal surrounding the 2011 acquisition of NBCUniversal, the channels will bring to Comcast a total of eight “minority owned’ networks Comcast promised to launch as part of the deal.
Comcast senior executive vice president and chief diversity officer David Cohen stated, “We had a lot of strong proposals”. He also went on to say that when considering the channels, Comcast created a diverse advisory committee inclusive of Comcast employees.
Cleo TV, owned and operated by TV One parent company Urban One is a lifestyle network targeting millennia and Gen X women of color with programming that is short and long form. Michelle Rice, TV One’s General Manager released a statement about the new channel saying “We’re at a pivotal moment in history where women are making a huge impact in our society and culture, especially women of color, “CLEO TV will offer a diverse mix of lifestyle and entertainment content through the unique lens of Millennial and young Gen X women of color, an audience segment currently underserved.
CLEO TV will leverage the comprehensive media platform of our parent company Urban One, Inc. which includes digital, television and radio divisions that will each play an integral role in bringing this new network to the marketplace. We appreciate the support of our inaugural launch partner Comcast, as well as Cadillac and Curls for this tremendous opportunity to elevate new voices in our industry”.
Yves Bollanga, serial entrepreneur and owner of Afro TV and Afrotainment family of channels stated to Forbes Magazine “There is an unfulfilled demand for Black content on TV in North America. Our vision is to produce and broadcast Afro-centric original content to as many devices and households as we possibly can. “Afrotainment was created to act as a cultural bridge amongst all the Black communities: the Caribbean, Black American, Black Hispanic, mixed racial heritage or African immigrants”.
Both channels are set to release January 2019 and will join the ranks of Revolt TV founded by Sean “Diddy” Combs and Aspire TV led by Magic Johnson.