LatinWorks Snares Hyundai Hispanic

NEW YORK LatinWorks has been selected to lead national Hispanic marketing and advertising efforts for Hyundai Motor America.

A national Hispanic campaign including broadcast, print and interactive elements is expected to launch next month.

Sergio Alcocer, president and CCO at the Austin, Texas-based Hispanic agency, said the selection was pushed back while the HMA marketing team was restructured at headquarters in Fountain Valley, Calif., and during the search for a new general-market agency. Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, based in San Francisco, won the account in April.

“That’s when they started the search for a Latino agency,” said Alcocer, who will helm the $30 million account.

Omnicom Group holds a noncontrolling interest in LatinWorks, which competed against four other Hispanic agencies: Acento Advertising, based in Los Angeles; Grupo Gallegos in Long Beach, Calif.; Omnicom’s Dieste Harmel & Partners in Dallas; and Winglatino, WPP’s Hispanic shop in New York.

Coral Gables, Fla.-based del Rivero Messianu stopped working with HMA six months ago, which contributed to the steep dip in ad spending this year.

According to Nielsen Monitor-Plus, HMA’s combined ad spending for Hispanic television and print has reached $15 million so far this year, with TV accounting for $13 million. That’s a 30 percent decrease in combined spending from the same time period in 2006, which totaled $35 million.

“Hyundai understands the importance of the Hispanic market and with the addition of LatinWorks as our marketing partner, we are strengthening our commitment to this community,” said Joel Ewanick, HMA vice president of marketing, in a statement.

Alcocer sees the win as “a phenomenal opportunity,” adding, “There is a new general-market positioning that is well on its way. We need to start working in tandem [with all the marketing teams] to explore what is the voice of the brand for Latinos.”

LatinWorks had a stellar week with new account wins. Tuesday brought news that the shop has been named agency of record for Batanga, the online entertainment company, which secured $30 million Series C financing.

Alcocer said, “It’s really exciting times for Hyundai and for Batanga and obviously for LatinWorks.”