|Availability||National, through regional affiliates|
Univision Radio is the radio division of media giant Univision Communications, Inc., which also owns the Univision television network. The company was formerly known as Hispanic Broadcasting Corporation. It is the eighth largest radio company in the United States, and the largest Hispanic radio company in the nation. With the highly rated Spanish radio stations in the United States.
Like most of today's large broadcast concerns, Univision Radio is the combination of several companies. Univision, previously known as Hispanic Broadcasting Corp. (between 2000 and 9-22-2003) and Heftel Broadcasting Corp, was the result of a February 14, 1997 merger of Tichenor Media System, Inc. a private company based in Dallas, Texas and Heftel Broadcasting, a public company based in Las Vegas, NV.
Tichenor had been in broadcasting since the 1940s. McHenry Tichenor operated a station (KGBS on 1240, later KGBT on 1530)in Harlingen, Texas. In 1950 they added KUNO Corpus Christi, Texas. later they owned KIFN in Phoenix, AZ, WGMA in Hollywood, FL, WACO-AM-FM-and TV-CP in Waco, Texas. In 1975 the company (Operating as Harbenito radio) added KCOR (AM) and KQXT (FM) in San Antonio.
In 1981 the grandson of the founder, McHenry T. Tichenor, Jr. was named president of the company. He began to focus the company on its Spanish Language stations. Waco, Hollywood, and Phoenix were sold to their local managers. In 1984 the company sold KQXT in San Antonio to Westinghouse's Group W Broadcasting and purchased KLAT (AM) in Houston, Texas from Marcos Rodriguez, Sr. and Marcos Rodriguez. The KLAT purchase gave Tichenor access to top Spanish Radio talents Chuck Brooks, Ricardo del Castillo (who later became COO, then retired) and Gary Stone (now President of Univision Radio). In 1985, WIND Chicago and KYSR AM/FM in El paso were purchased. More stations were purrchased over the next years, and the home office moved to Dallas, Texas from Harlingen. Mac Tichenor, Jrs brother Warren (now Embassador for the US to the United Nations http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/biog/73244.htm) became general manager of the San Antonio stations in 1991.
Heftel Broadcasting was founded by Cecil Heftel. He, his family, and his inlaws family had all been broadcasters. He had a company in the fifties and early sixties anchored by KIMN in Denver and KGMB Am/TV in Honolulu. He added numerous big AM stations in this first company before he began to sold out. In the seventies he added FM stations, and became the congressman from Hawaii. Heftel began again in the early 80s with KTNQ (AM) and KLVE (FM) established Spanish Stations in Los Angeles, CA. He bought and sold stations in the Indianapolis and Chicago areas. For about a year, Heftel and Scott Ginsburg merged their holdings into H & G Communications.
In the early 90s Heftel began to expand into more Spanish stations, and took steps to go public (new executive Carl Parmer). Heftel had a knack for making coalitions work, at least for a time, as in the H & G attempt. Heftel set up shop in Miami with local stations WAQI and WRTO, taking a minority interest. Heftel set up Rodriguez-Heftel Texas broadcasting along with Marcos Rodriguez (owner of KESS and other Dallas area stations and son of Marcos Rodriguez, Sr.). Stations were purchased outright in Chicago, Las Vegas, and New York.
When HBC went public, Clear Channel Communications invested, taking in several steps up to a 20% interest. In 1996 Clear Channel tendered the shares owned by Heftel management. This got them about 62% of the company. They struck a deal to merge the new company with Tichenor Media, to be run by the Tichenor management. The deal closed in early 1997, and made for the first national Spanish Language broadcasting company.
Mac Tichenor (MT Tichenor Jr) president, David Lykes VP Sales (retired 2002, replaced by Gary Stone), Ricardo del Castillo VP Operations (left 1998 (died 2008), Jeff Hinson CFO (left 2004, replaced by Tim Ward,) Dave Gerow VP/controller/auditor/tax structure guru, Jorge Plasencia VP of marketing, communications and public affairs (left in November 2006 to start República) David Gleason & Bill Tanner VPs of Programming/research David Stewart Director of Engineering (VP-Engr 2003)(exited 4-1-2008 to manage his own interests (Moving Target Consulting Works, KBXJ, KPET, KWFB radio stations) replaced by Mark Stennett former VP/DoE NextMedia) http://www.radioink.com/Article.asp?id=932724&spid=28605
The new company was worth 1 billion dollars at closing and owned 38 stations. Holding were expanded for the next several years. San Francisco was added in 1996. Phoenix was added in 1999. Fresno in 2000.
Besides buying stations, the company has developed a capacity for improving and expanding stations to enhance coverage. For example, 104.9 KAMA-FM (was KPTY) in the Houston, Texas area moved from a smaller class A at Rosenberg, Tx to a larger class C3 licensed to Missouri City, Texas. Coverage went from a few hundred thousand to millions. rating and value increased proportionally. (Note a construction permit for increase to class C2 was granted (BPH-20070914ACP GRANTED 06/25/2008. This will allow an increase from 2,700 watts to 8,700 watts. The station will also move from a downtown building roof to the company owned KLTN tower.)). Other expanded and relocated stations include KFLC (AM), KESS-FM and KDXX (FM) in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, KBBT and KGSX in the San Antonio area, KLQV San Diego, and WADO (AM) New York.
In 1999, the company created a new entity, HBCI, Inc which was its interactive online presence. HBCi created a network of bilingual radio station web sites and a network of bilingual local city guide sites focused on the local Hispanic consumer in each of the markets the radio stations operated. HBCI achieved the rare milestone of reaching profitability in the dotcom industry just prior to the merger with Univision.
The company traded on the NASDAQ exchange under the symbol HBCCA. It moved to the New York Stock Exchange in May 2000. Stock traded as HSP.
In mid 2002 Univision and HBC voted to merge. The approval process was long and controversial. The deal was approved and closed on September 22, 2003.
After the 9-22-2003 merger of HBC and Univision, the division was renamed Univison Radio.
In June 2006, a deal to sell the company to a consortium of private equity firms was announced.