Agencies, Advertisers Scale Back Hispanic TV-Upfront Activities

Most Plan Roadshows Across Country to Meet With Smaller Groups

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- One of the spring rituals for Hispanic agencies and marketers has long been a trip to New York in mid-May for the Hispanic TV upfront and a packed week of parties and presentations to herald new programs and start nailing down ad dollars. Not this year.

In fact, it looks as if only cable channel Fox Sports en Español and another small Spanish-language channel called V-Me will do presentations during upfront week. Almost everyone else is opting for cross-country roadshows to meet with smaller groups of agencies and clients.

Univision, which in the past has hosted lavish events featuring Shakira and other Latin stars, has instead planned a five-city tour for the upfront.
Univision, which in the past has hosted lavish events featuring Shakira and other Latin stars, has instead planned a five-city tour for the upfront.
Fox Sports en Español's presentation is May 19 at Cipriani, and 2-year-old V-Me will present at the Samsung Experience on May 20.

"It's an opportunity for us to stand out," said Frank Donaldson, V-Me's senior VP-director of sales. "In a year, the company has gone from five advertisers to about 30, and we're looking to double our advertiser base."

On the road
Univision Communications set the tone by dropping the lavish Wednesday-morning presentation for 700 people that has anchored the Hispanic upfront for years and featured performances by Latin stars such as Shakira and Marc Anthony and the cast of Broadway shows. Instead, Univision is doing a five-city tour in April to hold "Partnership Forums," starting in Chicago with an April 1 meeting at the biggest multicultural media agency, Tapestry, and ending in New York on April 30.

NBC Universal's Telemundo, the No. 2 Spanish-language network, also opted for smaller, local client-development meetings.

ESPN Deportes will do client-development meetings in five cities this year and be included in ESPN's general-market presentation, a spokeswoman said. Other channels, such as Azteca America, GolTV and SiTV aren't doing upfronts.

Fewer Hispanic agencies and clients are likely to travel to New York, but Mr. Donaldson said more than 55% of all network ad dollars come out of New York.

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