Sports media and publications took a beating this year due to the huge slump in the automotive advertising category. SI Latino closed and ESPN (Disney) did not renew its license with Televisa Publishing and Digital to publish ESPN Deportes la Revista, the magazine. In addition, Fox Sports en espanol, published by Cuatro Media, also folded.
2010 looks better. For one, the 2010 Soccer World Cup is taking place next year and advertisers are very interested in reaching to Hispanic audiences through the event (to read Portada’s special editorial issue about the 2010 Soccer World Cup, please click here). That is one of the reasons that ESPN Deportes magazine (owned by Disney) has continued publication in 2010, albeit not through Televisa Publishing and Digital but Mexico’s Grupo GW, which already was producing, distributing and marketing ESPN The Magazine Mexico since July 2008.
In 2009 the publication had a circulation of 55,000 and a frequency of 6 times. As opposed to its competitor Futbol Mundial the magazine is distributed through newsstand and controlled circulation (events etc.) and not as an insert into Hispanic newspapers nationwide (Futbol Mundial’s main distribution strategy). In 2010 ESPN Deportes la Revista is going monthly, starting in February with a heavy emphasis on World Cup coverage.
Fernando Lopez, editor of ESPN Deportes, tells Portada that the magazine has a Mexican and a U.S. Hispanic edition.” The audiences are very different. Latinos in the U.S. miss their countries of origin a lot. That is why the content of the U.S. edition is related with their way of life, away from their families and provides them information about what is happening in their countries of origin”, Lopez says that ESPN Deportes U.S. edition has 15,000 paid subscribers and the circulation of the Mexican edition is 100,000. ESPN’s vast amount content is used for both editions. The magazine has 15 contributors.
A U.S. based team, led by Sam Pagan in New York City, sells advertising into the U.S. Hispanic edition. Mexican local advertising, for the Mexican edition, is taken care of by a Mexico City based sales team that is part of GW.
In terms of the type of Spanish that is used, Lopez notes that it is very similar in both editions, although the editorial team tries to make sure that the U.S. edition is understood by South Americans and Central Americans living in the U.S. Regarding content, there are important differences. “For the U.S. edition, soccer, boxing and baseball are the main sports. For the Mexican (global edition) all sports are covered”.