Hispanic Nets Turn Upfronts Into ‘Infronts'


As upfront season kicks off, an increasing number of
Hispanic broadcast and cable networks are skipping a big New
York City presentation in favor of a "touring" approach,
taking their upfront presentations on multicity tours in top Hispanic markets.

But Univision Communications -- which last year decided to
forgo its lavish annual upfront event in favor of smaller "partnership forums"
in five cities -- returns to New York this year with a blowout presentations
set for May 20.

FSE truck

Newcomer Estrella TV this year will conduct its first
upfront since its launch in September 2009. (Nielsen began rating Estrella TV
on March 8.) But instead of staging an event in New York -- where the Liberman
Broadcasting-owned network is still relatively unknown -- its sales and
programming executives will be touring Los Angeles, New York, Miami, Houston,
Dallas, Chicago and San Antonio for what they dub an "infront" presentation.

"We want to be in front of our clients ... spend some quality
time with individual agencies and advertisers and allow some time for questions
and discussions," said executive vice president of Estrella TV National Sales
Mike Reid. "And this wouldn't be possible through a big presentation in New
York City."

Estrella TV is owned by Burbank, Calif.-based Liberman and
covers 75% of U.S. Hispanic TV households through affiliate deals and
acquisitions. Among the things advertisers can expect this year from Estrella
TV is Duettos, a brand new song-and-dance
competition, and a national newscast anchored by Enrique Gratas, formerly of

Estrella TV's "infront" presentations will take place
between April 19 and May 21.

V-me -- which is also using the phrase "infront" - will take
a similat approach, forgoing a big event in New York City
in favor of a series of meeting with individual agencies and marketers starting
the first week of May and running through mid June.

"We have so much to present to our advertisers, that we felt
our time will be better spent by meeting with the agencies individually," said
V-me CEO Carmen di Rienzo.

Absent from this year's presentation will be Frank
Donaldson, the network's senior vice president and director of advertising
sales, who was let go in February after a two-year run.

"We will be announcing soon a new sales structure, which
includes the opening of a sales office in Los Angeles,"
di Rienzo told Hispanic TV Update,
though she declined to elaborate on Donaldson's departure.

Also taking a touring approach is Fox Sports en Español,
which for the first time will be taking a 92-person mobile showroom to several
cities, starting April 22 in Los Angeles.
The tour will include a live performance from standup comedienne Monique Marvez
and an outdoor party with competitive games. The final presentation will be May
13 in Miami.

NBC Universal-owned Telemundo will stick to private client-development
meetings, which were mostly conducted in March, and are expected to conclude with
a gala in Puerto Rico
surrounding the Billboard Latin Music
later this month (April 29). A press event has been set for the
morning of May 13.