Universal Pictures International (UPI), the London-based international video distribution arm of Universal Pictures, has announced its plans to launch a wholly-owned video distribution operation in Mexico.

Universal Pictures Mexico will launch on 1st January 2003, following the expiration of the current four-year joint venture distribution deal with Paramount, operating under the CIC Videos banner.

Universal Pictures Mexico, based in Mexico City, will be headed by managing director Salvador Arango, who is currently in charge of the CIC video distribution operation. Mr Arango will report to Wayne Borg, vice president, Universal Pictures, Asia Pacific & Latin America, based in London.

Mr Arango will be responsible for developing local acquisition business in addition to expanding the home video retail market in Mexico. Included in Universal Pictures Mexico's impressive upcoming product slate is The Bourne Identity, About A Boy, and Red Dragon.