Washington Post Will Buy Spanish-Language Newspaper
By Annys Shin
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, May 18, 2004; Page E01
The Washington Post Co. announced yesterday that it is buying El Tiempo Latino, an Arlington-based Spanish-language newsweekly, from Farragut Media Group Inc.
The purchase is The Post Co.'s most significant effort to date to connect with the rapidly growing Washington area Hispanic population, which now numbers roughly 447,000, according to 2000 census figures.
El Tiempo Latino, which has a circulation of 34,000, is distributed free at shops in the Hispanic community, at Metro stations and in selected Giant Food and 7-Eleven stores in the metropolitan area.
Its business and editorial operations will remain independent and under the control of its current leadership, although Post Co. executives and editors said The Post and El Tiempo Latino may collaborate on news gathering and advertising sales.
"El Tiempo Latino is an outstanding community newspaper, and it will play a vital role in The Post's ongoing efforts to reach the growing local Spanish-speaking community," Post publisher Boisfeuillet Jones Jr. said in a news release. "The transaction will help both El Tiempo Latino and The Post better meet the needs of Spanish-language readers and the advertisers who seek to reach them."
Post Co. officials would not disclose the purchase price.
El Tiempo is one of about two dozen weekly Spanish-language newspapers in the Washington area. One daily paper, three television stations, eight AM and FM radio stations, a cable network and various Web sites also serve the Spanish-speaking community.
Local Hispanic media leaders praised The Post's strategy of buying an established paper. "That does show some sensitivity on their part, to choose a partner with roots in the community," said Thomas Oliver, interim executive director of the National Association of Hispanic Publications. "The question is will [El Tiempo] be able to stay close to the values that are important to the Hispanic community?"
Since 2001, El Tiempo Latino and The Post have had an informal content-sharing relationship, in which El Tiempo Latino has the right to translate and reproduce Post staff stories and use staff photos. The Post's executive editor, Leonard Downie Jr., said The Post and El Tiempo Latino may eventually "expand their cooperation on news coverage."
But Post and El Tiempo editors declined to speculate on how such a future collaboration would work.
© 2004 The Washington Post Company