Hot Stuff

En Fuego

People like Latina magazine founder Christy Haubegger have been predicting a Latin explosion in American society for quite some time-but for some reason, it took Ricky Martin to make marketers for big corporations listen.

According to American Demographics magazine, the buying power of the Hispanic population has grown 67 percent since 1990 to $365 billion. Hispanic teens alone spent $19 million-a monthly average of $320 per teen-according to Teenage Research Unlimited.

This segment isn't just growing four times faster than the general population-it's currently redefining cool. Couples want to salsa, young men want to find the perfect guayabera (formerly a staple for only Cuban men), and Latin music-well, MTV's finally catching on.

Don't overlook this market thinking Latin fever is a passing trend. We said it was hot last year, we say it's hot this year, and at 30 million strong, to think it won't be hot next year, you'd have to be loco.

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This article was originally published in the December 1999 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Hot Stuff.

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