On the heels of Fox’s launch of Fox Hispanic Media (FHM) this week, NBC Universal today announced the formation of Hispanics at NBC an integrated sales marketing division that seeks to help marketers and advertisers connect with U.S. Hispanics across 42 NBC brands and their online extensions. “Hispanics represent 16% of the U.S. population, but only 4% of the total advertising market,” said Lauren Zalaznick, Chairman of NBCUniversal Entertainment & Digital Networks and Integrated Media, at a breakfast event in Manhattan.

A dozen new people are expected to work at the new sales, marketing and research platform. The effort is a way for NBCUniversal to capitalize on its position in the marketplace as a media company with the ability to reach 91% of the Hispanic audience across the full media spectrum – including cable, broadcast and digital – regardless of language.

“Think about it: We can reach Spanish-dominant Hispanics through Telemundo; acculturated Hispanics through mun2, but also all those English-dominant Hispanics that are watching our properties, including NBC, Syfy, Oxygen, Bravo, USA, E! and non-TV properties, including Fandango and iVillage,” Zalaznick told Portada after the event. Zalaznick surprised a reporter when she switched to Spanish at some point, promising to hold a Q&A entirely in the Spanish in the near future. The NBC executive says she has been taking Spanish lessons with Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s Spanish teacher Luis Cardozo.

The announcement of NBCU Hispanics was made Tuesday morning at a Women at NBC Power of the Purse breakfast at the New York Times building in Manhattan. It featured a keynote speech by Somalia-born model and entrepreneur Iman, and a panel of multicultural marketing experts, including Antonio Ruiz, partner at The Vidal Partnership, Telemundo’s COO Jacqueline Hernandez, and Coca-Cola’s Reynaldo Padua.

“The buying power of Hispanics will rise from $1 trillion in 2010 to $1.5 trillion in 2015, accounting for nearly 11% of the nation’s total buying power," said Zalaznick. “NBCUniversal is in a tremendous position to super-serve this growing and influential marketplace, with our unrivaled Hispanic audience reach and our proven track record of cross platform success."

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