A Very American Coup By Michael – Louis Ingram, Editor-in-Chief...
The dawning of a new broadcast era
By BASN Wire Services
Updated: September 16, 2010
NEW YORK — An “edutainment” and lifestyle network devoted to Historically Black Colleges and Universities across the United States, will launch in 2011. The announcement was confirmed by C3 Media, LLC a holding company, at a press conference Tuesday at Madison Square Garden. Designed to fill a void in the cable industry, the channel will serve as the official destination of the four major HBCU Conferences (MEAC, SWAC, SIAC, CIAA) featuring Black College sporting events. Additionally, the network will offer a full complement of education & entertainment (edutainment) as well as lifestyle programming. Built on the solid foundation of the 143-year old HBCU brand, the network will focus on a previously unexplored aspect of African American life focusing on its significant cultural importance to the global community. The new channel will bring a different business model to the cable industry by reinvesting in the African American community it will serve. The HBCU Network will provide a 20% equity position to HBCUs, offering direct financial benefit and long-term sustainability. “The idea and vision behind the creation of the HBCU Network is to preserve and celebrate the African American colleges and universities, while also providing opportunities for their growth and further prosperity,” said CEO Curtis Symonds. “At the same time, we are passionate and excited about building a strong media brand and network from the ground up.” Based in Atlanta, Georgia, the HBCU Network is owned and operated by C3 Media, LLC, a holding company that includes an executive team with more than 75 years of cable industry experience. C3 Media LLC is comprised of industry notables including veteran cable television executives Curtis Symonds, Chief Executive Officer; Clint Evans, Executive Vice President, Distribution & Marketing, and Candace Walker, Executive Vice President, Programming. “We are excited at the opportunity to bring an unexplored side of the African American experience to television,” said Ms. Walker, EVP, HBCU Net Programming. “Our goal is to engage our audience with quality programming that promotes the rich history and legacy of the Historically Black Colleges and Universities while giving voice to a young and diverse urban population.” “HBCU Net is well-positioned to educate, motivate and inspire with a clear focus on African American heritage and legacy.” According to Clint Evans, Executive Vice President, Distribution & Marketing, “The HBCU Network will be available across the United States, but initially within the 20 state HBCU footprint. This footprint encompasses the Mid-Atlantic, Midwest and Southern regions of the country.” The network’s primary audience will consist of African Americans 15-24 years of age and include the HBCU student population, Panhellenic organizations, Theological seminaries and the multicultural and general market student populations at non traditional universities and colleges. The network will also target HBCU faculty, alumni and sports fans; along with the broader African American 25 – 49+ population, as well as the multicultural and general market, and the educational community.