KBLR, virtual channel 39 (UHF digital channel 20), is a Telemundo owned-and-operated television station serving Las Vegas, Nevada, United States that is licensed to the nearby unincorporated community of Paradise. The station is owned by the Telemundo Station Group subsidiary of NBCUniversal. KBLR's studios are located in the Neonopolis complex on Fremont Street in downtown Las Vegas, and its transmitter is located on Black Mountain near Henderson.
On cable, KBLR is available on Cox Communications channel 9 in both standard and high definition.
The station was founded in 1988 by Glenn Rose, an entrepreneur who found early success as a franchisee in Southern California of Nutrisystem and used the wealth from that effort to found KBLR, a station whose call letters were inspired by the initials of his wife. During its first two years of operation, it aired a schedule heavy on public domain movies and TV shows, professional wrestling, and programs no other Las Vegas stations wanted to air. With the lack of compelling programming (and three other independent stations, including Fox-affiliated KVVU-TV), KBLR struggled to carve a niche during its early existence, and went dark August 1, 1992.
In 1993, Rose sold the station to a partnership known as Summit Media. Scott Gentry would relaunch the station as the first full-power Spanish-language television station in Las Vegas, eventually taking on a Telemundo affiliation as time went on.
Sale to NBC
On February 23, 2005, NBC bought Telemundo affiliate KBLR from Summit American (formerly Summit Media also owns KQLL, KJUL) for $32.1 million. The sale was completed on May 24, 2005.
In August 2008, KBLR confirmed reports from the Las Vegas Sun and announced at the city council meeting that its studio facility would be moving to Neonopolis on Fremont Street, which is part of the Fremont Street Experience. The station's studios were first occupied on January 20 with full completion on February 22, 2009. KBLR began broadcast operations from the new facility that day at 4:45 a.m.
The station previously had a repeater in Reno, Nevada, K52FF (channel 52); this station has since gone dark, and its license canceled.
As a result of the sale to NBCUniversal, KBLR is the only network owned-and-operated station in the Las Vegas media market.