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Grupo Televisa gets read on English mags

Acquires $4 mil stake in Hispanic Publishing Group

MEXICO CITY — Grupo Televisa, the largest producer of Spanish-language programming in the world, is taking its first steps into English.

The Mexican media conglom said it has acquired a $4 million stake in U.S.-based Hispanic Publishing Group, creating Hispanic Publishing Associates, of which Televisa will hold 51%.

The deal gives the net control of a pair of English-language titles aimed at the U.S. Hispanic marketplace, Hispanic Magazine and Hispanic Trends. The two have a combined circulation of roughly 350,000, the bulk attributed to Hispanic Magazine, which was founded in 1987 and targets a generally well-educated, upwardly mobile readership.

Televisa already has a large library of mags that it publishes in Spanish, ranging from celeb-focused glossy Caras to Cosmopolitan Mexico, as well as 15 titles that have distribution in the U.S.

However, the net’s acquisition marks its first foray into English-language publication, a further bridge toward long-term goal of being a Pan-American media company.

In March, Televisa moved its top three execs to Miami to focus on long-term strategy, and has since begun producing some skeins in the U.S. in partnership with Univision.

Executives at Hispanic Publishing Group said that they had been looking to sell a stake in the company, which was last acquired in 2002, for some time due to outstanding debts.

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