Just days shy of its 3rd year anniversary, MundoFox is no more. The network, now fully owned by Colombia’s RCN Televisión, has switched names to MundoMax.
The network also cancelled “Noticias MundoFox,” the national newscast that aired at 5:30 and 10:30 pm PT/ET, laying off its entire staff.
About 35 news personnel lost their jobs, including the show’s reporters, producers, editors and news management.
Anchor Rolando Nichols, who is under contract, was saved from the cuts. It’s unknown at this time in what his future role will be within the company.*
According to inside sources, news staffers were told during a meeting late this morning that there would be no newscast as of today, and after notifying them en masse of the layoff, began doing exit interviews.
One laid off staffer says that during that meeting, a Human Resources representative told them news was “never part of the plan” for RCN, which launched MundoFox as a joint venture with Fox International Channels (FIC) in 2012.
Network President Ibra Morales is currently in Miami, where an affiliate meeting was held today.
A source says the affiliates were given no prior notice about the network name change or the cancellation of the national newscast.
That time slot will be filled by “Lo más Intrépido,” a compilation of extreme action videos.
The “rebranding” was so sudden that the network’s MundoFox “bug” remained on air and the logo itself continued in use with the MundoMax name on the Facebook page.
The MundoFox page was shut down and replaced by MundoMax.
Just two weeks ago, FIC announced it had sold its stake in MundoFox to RCN.
Sources say the partnership was a rocky one, riddled with disagreements over programming, ratings and distribution, leading to Emiliano Saccone’s departure as President of the network and RCN bringing Morales as his replacement.
Media Moves reached out to Morales and RCN management, but has yet to receive a response with regards to the changes.
* CORRECTION: When first published, the story indicated Nichols was one of the layoffs.