Latin lifestyle magazine goes multimedia

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Urban Latino aims to build a multiplatform media business from its every-other-monthly print base.

The plan includes the March launch of an Internet portal, Ivamos Network (; three half-hour TV pilots; and Sol Concepts, a new advertising creative services unit.

The move comes as 5-year-old Urban Latino, which claims a 125,000 unaudited circulation, has applied to the Audit Bureau of Circulations for an audit possibly as soon as the third quarter. Last year, the magazine counted 180 ad pages in its six issues.

"We want to be a one-stop shop," said Phil Colon, director of marketing and interim president for Urban Latino. Mr. Colon becomes CEO of Ivamos in April.


The TV pilots are being hawked at the National Association of Television Programming Executives' annual conference in New Orleans this week. The offerings include an English-language entertainment show with a behind-the-scenes look at Latin celebrities, culture and style; "Ruido" a Spanish-language rock music program; and "Modo Estilo," a Spanish-language fashion and music show.

Pepsi-Cola is "very, very excited" about the pilots, said Steve Horn, VP-marketing at Pepsi Cola North America. "[Urban Latino] really understands the culture and can provide a unique perspective on the consumer."

"They've been successful with the magazine," said Monica Gadsby, senior VP-director of Hispanic media at Starcom Media Services, Chicago. "It's a product of great quality, and I'd expect they'd have equal success with the Web site. Securing clearance for the programming will be a greater challenge."

She said Univision Communications and Telemundo Group each have 24-hour networks structured with very few syndication windows. Ms. Gadsby predicted new programming opportunities will come from the general market.

"Where Urban Latino may find the niche is with general market affiliates and independents who are competing for Hispanic eyeballs."


The programming will appear on Ivamos. The broadband-ready site will offer original content and archived editorial from the magazine with the aim of driving visitors to Urban Latino and the networks where the programming ultimately airs, Mr. Colon said.

Sol Concepts, expected to be in operation in conjunction with an existing Hispanic company by the end of the year, will focus on creative and promotional services while outsourcing media buying and planning.

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