Boston weekly acquires Spanish-language counterpart

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Phoenix Media/Communications Group, a Boston-based alternative weekly publisher, has purchased Spanish-language weekly El Planeta for an undisclosed sum.

The goal is to attract a larger Hispanic audience to the 265,000-circulation Boston Phoenix, which targets its free distribution to young, urban trendsetters. El Planeta, the largest of the four Boston-area Spanish-language weeklies, reports a circulation of 50,000, but Verified Audit Circulation places the number closer to 34,000 for the six months ending in March 2008.

"I personally strongly see the value in the Hispanic newspaper market and the opportunity for that to grow," Bradley Mindich, president of Phoenix Media, said in a statement. "It was one of these opportunities we couldn't pass up."

El Planeta was founded in 2004, and Phoenix Media has invested in it since 2005. The company also prints and distributes El Planeta. Employees of El Planeta will move to the Phoenix's Boston office in early 2009, and the Boston Phoenix and El Planeta will share some content. The publications will maintain separate Web sites, El Planeta on www.tuboston.com, and the Phoenix at www.thephoenix.com/Boston.

Representatives from Phoenix Media could not be reached for comment as of press time.

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