AOL Latino Snares Sponsors for Finance Channel Launch

AOL Latino is expected today to launch a new Spanish-language personal finance channel that’s drawn well-known brands and their sponsorship dollars. Initial category-exclusive sponsors seeking to reach the U.S. Hispanic audience via the channel include Century 21, Wells Fargo, and Ford Motor Company.

The channel, called Dinero y Éxito (which translates to Money and Empowerment), features content on filing taxes, setting budgets, reducing credit card debt, and using 401(k) plans. Features from AOL-operated and Ford-sponsored small business site Mi Negocio, will also be incorporated.

“We… generated quite a bit of interest from the marketers that wanted to enjoy that halo effect as being part of enhancing and improving consumers’ lives,” said Peter Blacker, VP for sales and network solutions for America Online International and U.S. Hispanic. “They’re not just advertisers, but really true sponsors. They all provide either applications or content or things that help round out our offering to this market.”

Wells Fargo is providing a mortgage calculator and other tools from its Spanish-language Web site, launched in 2002.

“We are viewing this is our first foray into third-party advertising for the Latino consumer on a site that has a good reputation,” said Liliana Salas-Grip, VP for the Latino segment at Wells Fargo. Salas-Grip said the company aimed to drive traffic to its Spanish-language site as well as generate mortgage applications there.

Century 21, which worked with the New York-based Vidal Partnership to do the deal, will contribute home buying guides and other content elements. Zubi Advertising of Coral Gables, FL, put together the sponsorship for Ford, which has provided text articles and video content from small business experts from the Mi Negocio site. Wells Fargo worked directly with AOL.

Though Blacker wouldn’t elaborate on the pricing for the sponsorships, he said the programs are typically CPM (define)-based with an additional sponsorship fee. The company says 2.5 million U.S. Hispanics currently use AOL Latino.

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