Terra, Autobytel Drive Partnership

Terra.com, a portal aimed at U.S. Hispanics, and Autobytel, operator of the Internet car sites, have launched a co-branded channel. Financial terms of the pact were not disclosed.

“One of our ongoing goals has been to provide Hispanic shoppers with the tools and information they need to make smart, informed car-buying decisions, and to help the auto industry connect with the Hispanic segment,” said Andrew Donchak, Autobytel’s chief marketing officer.

Accessible through the “auto” tab at Terra’s main page, the section offers searchers interactive tools for researching and buying new and used vehicles in Spanish and English.

It’s Autobytel’s latest effort to expand its reach through partnerships. For example, the Irvine, Calif.,-based company inked a similar deal with Priceline.com last fall.

For Terra, part of the Terra Lycos network of sites, the deal also provides new ad opportunities for marketers looking to reach the coveted Hispanic market.

Among the highly targeted advertising tools are: content integration, data collection and database development, direct email campaigns, and other Internet advertising options.

Terra said the U.S. Hispanic consumer segment is a powerful bloc with buying power of $500 billion, projected to grow to one trillion dollars by 2007.

Moreover, 70 percent of the U.S. Hispanic Internet users polled in a recent survey indicated that they planned to use the Web during the car purchasing process. The figure jumped to 84 percent if they could search in Spanish-language tools.

For these reasons, the partnership seemed a natural fit, Terra said.

“(Autobytel) has been a pioneering force in developing Spanish-language auto research tools and information,” said Manuel Bellod, CEO of Terra, which is part of the Terra Lycos network.

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