Remigio Ángel González

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Remigio Ángel González González (1944, Higueras, Nuevo León[1]), usually known as Angel Gonzalez, is the Mexican-born owner of the Latin American media network Albavisión; he has lived in Miami since 1987.[1] The network (previously named Televideo Services[2]) is named for his wife Alba Elvira Lorenzana, from Guatemala.[1] González was estimated to be worth $350m in 2002,[2] and by some accounts is now worth $2bn.[1] González has a conservative political stance, but he aims to keep a low profile and cooperate with host country governments.[3] As part of this strategy, he is said to have modified the editorial lines of his stations, particularly in Guatemala and Nicaragua, in order to please governments.[3]

Albavisión[edit]

The foundation for the Albavisión network, created in May 2008,[1] was laid in 1981 when González acquired his two Guatemalan television stations (Canal 3 and 7).[2][3] At the time, González was a sales representative for Mexico's Televisa, selling its programming in Central America, and used Televisa's loan backing to acquire the station.[3] In the mid-1990s he acquired Guatemala's Canal 13, and completed a "virtual monopoly control of that nation's commercial television airwaves".[3]

In January 2010 the Albavision network had 26 television stations (including La Red (Chile), ATV (Peru), SNT (Paraguay) and Canal 9 (Argentina)) and 82 radio stations.[1] Many Latin American countries have laws restricting foreign ownership, and as a result the network has a range of "phantom companies run by local relatives, friends and stand-ins";[2] his Guatemalan properties are in his (Guatemalan) wife's name.[3]

Through Albavision, González controls four television stations in Guatemala - Channels 3, 7, 11 and 13,[1] attaining a monopoly of commercial television channels.[3] He also controls 3 of Nicaragua's 9 television stations (Channels 10 and 4, with 12 as an affiliate).[1] He also owns 3 stations in Costa Rica, as well as 5 in the south of his native Mexico.[1]

A 2001 study of González' media properties in Guatemala and Nicaragua found that they had a tendency to squeeze out voices opposed to the government, and concluded that "Gonzalez’s ownership practices create an atmosphere that undercuts the development of democracy."[3] He has a strong influence in Guatemalan politics, for example giving $650,000 to Vinicio Cerezo's 1985 presidential campaign,[3] as well as more than $2.6 million and free airtime to Alfonso Portillo's 1999 campaign. "Political analysts say the free commercials helped Portillo win the election."[2] After becoming president, Portillo "named Gonzalez's brother-in-law, Luis Rabbe, as his minister of communications, infrastructure and housing, a powerful Cabinet position whose jurisdiction includes the oversight of broadcast media."[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Dom Serafini, Video Age International, Central American Television Touched By An Angel, January 2010
  2. ^ a b c d e f Will Weissert, Associated Press, 9 June 2002, Domination of Latin airwaves has 'Ghost' scaring his critics
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i Rockwell, Rick and Janus, Noreene (2001), "Stifling Dissent: the fallout from a Mexican media invasion of Central America, Journalism Studies, 2: 4, 497 — 512

http://www.poder360.com/article_detail.php?id_article=5236&pag=1

External links[edit]