network_name = RCN Televisión
network_type = Broadcast Television Network
country = flagicon|Colombia Colombia
available = National
founder =
owner =
slogan =
key_people = Carlos Ardila Lülle, legal representative
launch_date = July 10, 1998
website = [http://www.canalrcn.com/ Canal RCN]

RCN Televisión is a Colombian private television network. It started as a production company ("programadora") in 1967. Since 1998 it became a network by acquiring one of the two licenses granted by the Colombian government (the other Colombian private TV network is Caracol TV).

RCN reaches 97% of the Colombian population through 13 stations. Its main shareholder is Carlos Ardila Lülle.

RCN stands for "Radio Cadena Nacional" ("National Radio Network"). It produced "Betty la fea", one of the most successful Colombian soap operas.


RCN Television was created as a part of RCN Radio, who was owned by entrepreneurs from Antioquia. In 1967 RCN Radio took part in the bidding for spaces in the official television network, getting one hour a day which was distributed into two series: one made in Colombia named "El Hogar" (The Home) and the American television series Bewitched. In 1973 RCN radio and so its subsidiary RCN Television were purchased by Carlos Ardila Lülle who three years later relaunch RCN as a television production company with several spaces into the official channels schedule. RCN was the first company who broadcasted a television program in color and live. This program was the Miss Colombia beauty contest, since that year RCN had hold the rights to broadcast this event.

The 80s

RCN produce television series with high remembrance within the viewers like "Cusumbo" and "El Taita" in 1984, which was the first Colombian telenovela filmed in exterior locations. In August, 1988, RCN becomes part of OTI Colombia, so it gains the rights to broadcast the Olympic Games and the FIFA World Cup.

The 90s

Along with Caracol TV and RTI, RCN becomes one of the major television production companies in Colombia, producing not only telenovelas, game shows, but also sports events and news. Nevertheless the telenovelas gave to RCN an outstanding recognition, first in Latin America and in places so distant as Vietnam and Hungary. Among this productions were La Potra Zaina, Las Juanas and the international hit Café, con aroma de mujer, which not only have been broadcasted in several countries across the globe but it has been remade several times, being Destilando Amor the newest version. Within the lot of stuff produced in the 90s there was productions like "La Otra Raya del Tigre, La Vorágine, La Casa de las dos Palmas, Azucar, Momposina and Hombres", all of them raising parts of the Colombian culture and showing it to the world.

Private Television Network

In 1995 the Colombian government opened a bidding for two private television networks, each one operating with one channel. RCN took part of this bidding, getting one of the two licenses, the other one was for Caracol TV. In 1997 started the construction of the infrastructure to launch the television channel. The 10th of July, 1998, RCN aired for the first time as private channel. In this first stage, RCN launched two telenovelas -"La Madre and Carolina Barrantes"- and improved the news bulletins, nevertheless the first year RCN -and also Caracol- just got a little part of the television viewers in Colombia, because the broadcasting infrastructure was not complete and because the production companies which remained in the official channels launched a solid strategy to keep the viewers. Just in the second semester of 1999 and the first one of 2000, RCN and its rival network "Caracol" got to beat the public channels taking more of the 90 percent of the viewers. RCN firsts hits were "Francisco El Matemático" (Francisco, the mathematics guy), a teenagers-oriented series, aired on Saturdays night, but thanks to its succes was moved to prime time Mondays to Fridays; and "El Fiscal" (The Attorney) an action oriented series.

Since the success of "Francisco El Matemático" and "El Fiscal", RCN launched successful telenovelas in 2001 which let it take the first place in the colombian most watched networks, these telenovelas were "Me Llaman Lolita" (My Name is Lolita) and Yo soy Betty, la Fea, that became the most successful telenovela ever in Colombia, topping "Café con aroma de mujer".

Following the international trend, RCN launched in 2003 its first Reality Show: "Protagonistas de Novela", which became the most watched show that year in Colombia, its second season despite not getting the amount of viewers that the first season got, kept the first place in the most watched shows in Colombia. Following "Protagonistas de Novelas", RCN launched "La Isla de los Famosos" (a Colombian version of Survivor), which became the most watched show in RCN in 2004, and the second season named "Una Aventura Pirata" (A pirate adventure) got again the place of most watched show in Colombia. The RCN's telenovelas those years were kind of middle quality, not until with the launching of Los Reyes (a Colombian version of Argentinian series Los Roldán) and Fernando Gaitan's Hasta que la plata nos separe (Until money do us apart) that a telenovela from RCN got high ratings to become the most watched show in Colombia. But despite those years the telenovelas did not put the network in the first place, the colombian version of X Factor did it, becoming the show number one in Colombia in 2006, with two seasons, and a third and a fourth named Factor XS, where the competitors are kids instead of adults. RCN gained some criticism against the fact the network was getting ratings from the use of kids in a reality show, but the parents of the kids dismissed this affirmation.

RCN got a hit with 2007 telenovelas "Pura Sangre" and "La Hija del Mariachi", success followed by the 2008 telenovelas, El Último Matrimonio Feliz and Los Protegidos.

In July 2008, RCN became the first TV network in Colombia to offer English language newscasts. RCN News in English is available on the internet at 7am and 7pm ET Monday through Friday through the network's internet site. It is anchored and produced by veteran Miami TV personality Brian Andrews from the RCN studios in Bogota.


RCN presently operates on a 22-hour regular network programming per day, and its signal is the same all over the country, with no changes in the schedule, which starts in the early morning (4:00 am) with reruns of previously aired telenovelas, the morning is covered with breakfast television (Muy Buenos Días), with a break for news, and then religious programming (Cura Para el Alma), the news returns at 12:30 pm and the rest of the afternoon is taken by national and foreign telenovelas until 7:00 pm with the news bulletin, and at 8:00 pm the prime time starts with national telenovelas until 10:30 pm, the night is taken by news and editorials tv shows (i.e. La Noche).

Prime Time

News are in orange; Telenovelas are in pink; entertainment shows aquamarine;new Comedies in blue; Dramas in green; Movies in Blue-green; Sports in Ochre

External links

* [http://www.canalrcn.com/ Official Site] es icon
* [http://www.rcninteractivo.com/ RCN Interactivo]
* [http://www.noticiasrcn.com.co/ Noticias RCN]
* [http://www.rcnnews.tv/ RCN News in English]
* [http://www.tvcolombia.com/ TV Colombia] (international cable network shared with "Citytv Bogotá")
* [http://www.rcn.com.co/ RCN Radio - Cadena Básica]

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