Last week, during Spanish Broadcasting System’s third quarter earnings call, Albert Rodriguez, the company’s president and COO, announced that he was leaving his post. While the announcement came as a surprise, Rodríguez says that, after 25 years at SBS, he is leaving in good terms.
“I’m going to stay on as a consultant during the transitioning period,” he told Billboard in his only interview following his announcement. “We’re leaving in excellent terms and I’m very appreciative to Raul [Alarcón],” he added, referring to the chairman and CEO of the company, to whom Rodríguez directly reported to.
Rodriguez is still evaluating his future plans, but will likely launch his own consulting company.
SBS is the formidable Latin media company whose suite of radio stations in the top markets in the U.S. include La Mega in New York, the most-listened to Spanish language radio station in the country, according to Nielsen. SBS also operates the AIRE Radio Networks, a national radio platform of over 300 affiliated stations.
Rodríguez joined the company 25 years ago, initially as a general salesperson, and climbed the ranks. In June, 2021, he was named president, making it the first time in 36 years that the company named a new president, and first time it was led by a non-family member.
Working with Raúl Alarcón, who he calls a “beacon” of the Hispanic community, was a major highlight during his long tenure at SBS.
“The team we built is like family [to me]. We have performed better than all our industry peers,” says Rodríguez. A point of major pride, he says, was the launch of the Aire network, “which has grown immensely in terms of revenue and content and distribution.”
“We served very passionately the Hispanic voice in America,” adds Rodríguez of SBS, noting that despite Hispanics making up 20% of the total U.S. population, they represent only 6% of the U.S. market’s total advertising budget for 2022, according to the Hispanic Marketing Council. Moving forward, he says, “I want to be a leader in developing and increasing share to the multicultural space.”