Convergencia Research, Análisis y consultoría
Monday, January 25, 2021

Alliances Map in Argentina 2020

Surprising acquisitions accelerated over the end of 2020

In a unique 2020, in the last weeks of the year several operations were closed and others are in process. Certain movements such as the purchase of Edenor by Vila-Manzano are striking. Francisco de Narváez from Grupo Cronista who returns to the supermarket by acquiring Walmart. The Brightstar outlet that sold for “a dollar” to Mirgor. The irruption of the Santa Martah Group of Carlos Rosales, which after taking over the Garbarino chain bought Radio Continental and other stations of the Prisa group. There were other notable changes.

The arrival in the country of two submarine cables was important: Malbec, from Facebook and GlobeNet, and Tannat, promoted by Google and the Uruguayan Antel.

The Clarín Group continued to be the predominant player and in the 2020 Alliance Map it presents its four major integrated brands (Telecom, Fibertel, Cablevisión and Personal) as was also the case in the 2019 edition.

The few annual changes included an increase in the stake in the producer Pol-ka from 55% to 91.3% and that the company Tinta Fresca is in the process of merging with AGEA, the holding's printing industry parent.

Claro, from América Móvil and Movistar, from Telefónica, the other two large convergent operators, stand out on the sector stage. Claro reported that the only change compared to 2019 was that Telmex Internacional was renamed Teintl. For its part, Telefónica announced the restructuring of its business in Latin America and in particular in Argentina. The Spanish parent company is pending to sell some of its operations in the region or build new partnerships or alliances for some of the countries, including the local case.

The Profile Group, mainly owned by the Fontevecchia family, highlighted the importance of its digital newspaper, which represents the majority of its turnover. The company maintained the printed weekly Perfil, the Buenos Aires Times, the Noticias, Caras magazines and its online version, the Net TV television channel and the radio 101.9 FM Radio Perfil. He stopped publishing five magazines: Hombre, Supercampo, Semana, Luna Teen and Neo.

The October Group claimed ownership of the Buenos Aires television Channel 9 although the signal is being judicially intervened. This year it also added the IP cable news signal, for which it hired an important team of social communicators. Malena tango radio became an online station with the name

The Olmos Group reported the aggregate of the Depo and Cronishop media in relation to its 2019 structure. The group linked to the Union of Metalworkers Union (UOM) was active at the end of 2019 when it bought La Opinion Austral, from Río Gallegos, Santa Cross. In 2020, according to the newspaper La Nación, it took steps to acquire the local operation of the Telefónica group. Neither party referred to the version. La Nación published in recent months other versions of low credibility whose purpose seems to be aimed at disturbing or confusing, as well as other fake news.

On the Grupo América side, Vila-Manzano (co-owner with Claudio Belocopitt) acquired the electricity provider Edenor for which it paid US $ 100 million to Pampa Energía, owned by Marcelo Mindlin. Edenor has poles in 80% of its concession area in CABA and the north and west of Greater Buenos Aires. Only in the areas with low voltage lines it has about 16 poles per block. The company currently rents them to Cablevisión.

Another notable purchase is that of the local business of the Walmart supermarket chain by businessman Francisco De Narváez, owner of Grupo El Cronista. The transaction was sealed for US $ 44 million according to the company, which reported plans to invest another US $ 120.

In the year of the pandemic, there was an increase in radio ignition to 5 hours and 38 minutes a day, according to the consulting firm Ibope Kantar Media. The report on the new media boom indicates that the main challenge for companies is to seduce young people since 66% of listeners are over 35 years old. In this context, the Alpha Group's negotiations to add FM Metro 95.1, owned by the Moneta group, to its list of companies. If the operation is completed, Alpha Media will add one of the stations with the highest audience in the AMBA although it will no longer have the main stars of the programming that left that medium. In turn, the Spanish group Prisa is in talks with the businessman Carlos Rosales, owner of the Garbarino Group, for the sale of AM 590 Radio Continental and FM 105.5 and 104.3. On the public media side, we must highlight a reformulation of the system under the government of the Frente de Todos. The so-called Federal System of Media and Public Content of the macrismo became the Secretariat of Media and Public Communication under the orbit of the Chief of the Cabinet of the Nation.

There they were contained Radio and Argentine Television; the Telam news agency; and Public Contents State Society. The Ministry of Media and Public Communication also participates in the Advisory Council of the Argentine Digital Terrestrial Television System. In addition, the media map of the State includes Arsat, with a composition without modifications compared to 2019; and and Cinear Play media that depend on the Ministry of Culture of the Nation. An interesting novelty was the launch of Correo Compras, the market place of Correo Argentino, with which the State got, in a very modest way, in the field of online sales operation.

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