ATLANTA: The first-ever, over-the-air broadcast TV network programmed exclusively for African-American audiences will launch this fall, according to its founders. Bounce TV was announced today by a team of executives that includes former United Nations Ambassador Andrew Young and Martin Luther King III among others. It will target African Americans 25-54 with a schedule of general entertainment programming, sporting events and off-net series.
“There are nearly 13 million Hispanic television households that are served by dozens of Spanish and Spanish-language versions of networks,” Bounce TV executive vice president, Ryan Glover, said. “Yet, the more than 14 million African American TV households have just a few dedicated cable channels--and no over-the-air networks . . . until now. Bounce TV will fill the void for people who are hungry for more African American-related programming, stories, characters, sports and events.”
Bounce TV will be an ad-supported network with half of that time being available for local insertion by affiliates. Former executive vice president of U.S. Syndication Sales for Sony Pictures Television, Jeffrey Wolf, currently head of The Lobo Group, will handle network distribution of Bounce TV.
The programming line-up includes the rights to nearly 400 titles from multi-year licensing agreements announced today with NBC Universal, Sony, Codeblack Entertainment and Image Entertainment. The deal with NBCU covers nearly 200 titles that include the 2004 production of the movie “Ray,” Denzel Washington’s “The Hurricane” and “The Bone Collector;” several Spike Lee movies, the two “Nutty Professor” films with Eddie Murphy and others. Bounce TV licensed around 100 titles Sony Pictures--“Philadelphia,” “Glory,” “Ali,” among them. Rights to around 50 movies and documentaries each were acquired Codeblack and Image.
For live sports, Bounce worked out a deal with the Urban Sports Entertainment Group for football and basketball games from the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association.
In addition to Young and King, the executive team includes Rob Hardy and Will Packer, co-founders of Rainforest Films. Hardy will serve as chief content officer while Packer will be chief strategy and marketing officer. Former Turner Broadcasting executives Glover and Jonathan Katzwill are as executive vice presidents.
Bounce TV will be majority owned and operated by African Americans, with Young, Andrew “Bo” Young III, Hardy, Packer and Glover as part of the initial ownership team. The network is leveraging the marketing, digital, post production and operational resources of Atlanta-based CSE.
-- Television Broadcast