Cisneros’s first female ceo seeks latin america expansion


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Adriana Cisneros, CEO and Vice Chairman of Cisneros, is leading an organizational evolution focused on growth through acquisitions in Latin America in order to dominate the Spanish-language TV and to exploit the e-commerce potential.

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Cisneros’s first female ceo seeks latin america expansion

  1. 1. Cisneros’s First Female CEO Seeks Latin America Expansion By CORINA PONS Adriana Cisneros, the chief executive officer of the Cisneros Group, is targeting acquisitions from Mexico to Colombia after taking the reins from her billionaire father in September. Cisneros said the 84-year-old holding company is seeking opportunities to buy networks, expand production companies and capitalize on e-commerce growth across Latin America to boost revenue as much as 25 percent over the next two years. Estimates by Bloomberg that the Coral Gables, Florida-based company has $800 million in annual revenue are “low,” she said, without giving more details. “I’m 95 percent focused on doing business in Latin America,” Cisneros, 33, said in an interview from her 14th floor office with views of Biscayne Bay and downtown Miami. “I am clearly not changing my company to make less money. Dominating Spanishlanguage TV is my goal.” The move represents a shift in focus for the Cisneros Group, which owns Venezuela’s top-rated television channel, the Miss Venezuela beauty pageant and a production company that spins out 3,000 hours of high-definition soap operas and other content for partners including Univision, the biggest Spanish-language channel in the U.S. Adriana’s father, Gustavo Cisneros, said in a 2011 interview that the group was seeking joint ventures with Chinese investors outside its core media business, including in cattle, mining and energy.
  2. 2. ‘China is Yours’ “I told my father that China is yours and Latin America is my China,” she said, adding that the company’s “Eva Luna” soap opera series will debut on the CCTV network in China this month. Latin America’s middle class “is here to stay” after a decade of growth, she added. A mother of two with degrees from Columbia University andNew York University, Cisneros previously oversaw the company’s digital initiatives, building up online and mobile ad units RedMas and Adsmovil. Although she took the CEO title in September, she said she’s been helping make major decisions the past year and that her youth in an advantage in the media industry. “I was born into a world where digital is the new platform,” she said. “Latin America is the place that has the highest growth in digital advertising in the world.” Adsmovil boosted revenue 170 percent this year while digital ad spending in the region is growing 35 percent per year, she said without giving more details. Colombia and Peru are “extremely promising” markets for expansion while Mexico and Braziloffer the best opportunities for growing digital content, Cisneros said. Argentina is also a potential market given recent changes in media laws, she said IPO Plans Argentina’s biggest media company, Grupo Clarin SA, has said it will comply with an antitrust law that may force it to divest some television and radio assets. Brazil’s Globo Comunicacao & Participacoes SA, the region’s biggest closely-held media company, isn’t a direct competitor with Cisneros because of its focus on the Portuguese-language market, she said.
  3. 3. Some of the company’s digital acquisitions may sell shares in the coming years, Cisneros said, while ruling out an initial public offering for the parent company, which was founded in 1929 by her grandfather Diego as a transport business in Caracas. As a child, Adriana traveled alongside her father as he brokered deals introducing DirecTV to Latin America after starting Univision, the first network in the U.S. targeting Hispanics. Cisneros sold his stake in Univision in 2006 as part of a $12.3 billion buyout by investors including billionaire Haim Saban. Beyond media, the company is developing Tropicalia, a $2 billion resort complex in the Dominican Republic. A Four Seasons will open on the property in two years, the first of several hotels, she said. Miss Venezuela This year Cisneros turned the traditional one-night Miss Venezuela beauty pageant into a 13-week reality series broadcast across Latin America that incorporated online voting. The format allowed the company to boost revenue from advertisers including Procter & Gamble Co. and Samsung Electronics Co. The brand got a further boost when the pageant’s 2012 winner, Maria Gabriela Isler, won the Miss Universe crown in Moscow Nov. 9. The strategy shows how Cisneros seeks to generate faster growth from existing properties while expanding the company’s digital reach. “They gave me a really great cruise ship, steady, that makes a lot of money and knows where it is going,” Cisneros said. “Now I will build a rocket-ship.” ©Copyright Bloomberg