In an attempt to attract national advertisers, four separately owned Spanish-language papers created a sales network in the top four Hispanic markets. The soon-to-be named network brings together La Opinión in Los Angeles (co-owned by the Lozano family and Tribune with 50% each, circ. 125,862, ABC audited), Miami's El Nuevo Herald (Knight Ridder, 90,264, ABC), New York's el Diario/La Prensa (owned by a group of investors led by Clarity Partners, circ. 52,601, ABC) and the Chicago weekly La Raza (PrensAmerica, 150,000, CAC). The new network's total circulation will be 418,727, a number comparable to the largest Hispanic magazines, but still much lower than radio and TV networks.

 

This move highlights a trend among Hispanic newspaper publishers to increase their reach in order to attract national advertisers. (See “Will national advertisers buy more print?” page 1, Portadatm No. 5 September/October 2003).

One rate pitch

“There will be a one rate pitch for the whole newspaper network,” Jorge Ayala, advertising sales director at el Diario/La Prensa told Portadatm. “We are currently averaging the CPMs that the four papers charge national advertisers.” Why would a newspaper with high national rates like El Nuevo Herald (CPM US $112) join a network that forces them to offer lower CPMs? “Collectively the four papers can attract new business in the top Hispanic markets that none of them would be able to attract individually,” explains Ayala, adding that he expects to see growth in pharmaceutical, government, hi-tech and first tier automotive advertising as a result of the new network. Will other newspapers be able to join? According to Ayala, “that's being reviewed. Chances are it would be advertiser driven.”

Publishers in the new network deny that their partnership is a reaction to Tribune's plans to launch separate papers under the Hoy brand. In fact, La Opinión, a member of the new network, is 50% owned by Tribune. But according to Enrique Kaufer, vice president of marketing at La Opinión, the two strategies are incompatible. “Our network analyzed the Hispanic newspapers in the four largest US markets,” he explains. “Miami's El Nuevo Herald is a strong complement to La Opinión in Los Angeles. New York and Chicago have Hoy editions, making el Diario/La Prensa and La>Raza obvious additions to the network.”

As to whether this creates a conflict of interest for Tribune, Kaufer explains that “Tribune has a very large portfolio of different publishing properties. Also, hands-on management of La Opinión is done by the Lozano family and not by Tribune executives.”

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