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Univision-HBC merger bugs some execs

Univision Communications Inc.'s bid to buy the Hispanic Broadcasting Corp. radio chain would be in big
trouble if the merger's fate lay in the hands of a group of 18 ad firms, media
buyers and station managers, many focusing on the Hispanic market.

Last week they urged the Federal Communications Commission to declare
Spanish-language media in the United States a separate market from English-speaking

Such a ruling would all but nix the deal given the combined company's 80%
reach in the Hispanic broadcast market.

They submitted a stack of letters mirroring the comments of Castor Fernandez,
president/creative director for Castor, a Miami buyer that has placed spots in
Hispanic media for The Coca-Cola Co., McDonalds Corp. and Procter & Gamble Co.

"For many products, the target audience cannot be reached unless it is
addressed in the familiar language," he wrote.

Castor said price hikes in one English media rarely lead advertisers to flee
to Spanish media and vice versa.

By contrast, between Hispanic TV and radio, he said, advertisers are quite
willing to swap one service for the other to get a better deal.