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South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Telemundo Tries To Put Latinos On The Road To Success

Magaly Morales

July 23, 2003
Copyright © 2003 South Florida Sun-Sentinel. All rights reserved. 

Despite the amount of fluff on Latin television these days, every once in a while the networks surprise us with programming worth its airtime. Such is the case of El camino al triunfo, (The Road to Success) an interesting and informative six-part series that hopes to motivate and empower U.S. Latinos to better manage their personal finances and achieve the American dream.

The half-hour program, co-produced by Telemundo and Ford, premieres at 5:30 p.m. Saturday.

El camino al triunfo features interviews with experts in different fields, legal advisers and government officials who will assist with all sorts of tips and information on how to start a new business or simply learn how to better handle your own wallet.

Hosted by financial analyst Xavier Serbia, the show also presents inspirational stories of successful entrepreneurs and profiles of Hispanics who serve as role models in the U.S. Latin community.

"We are not going to speak hypothetically," says Serbia, who is best known as a former member of the '80s boy band Menudo. "We are going to feature real stories, with real-life scenarios, and we are going to offer realistic solutions."

Serbia has gained recognition in recent years for his expertise in the field. Currently working on his second master's degree in finance, the 35-year-old Puerto Rican has collaborated as on-air financial adviser on Telemundo Network News, Esta Mañana and América al día, among other shows.

"Latinos are entrepreneurs by nature, but when they arrive in the United States, they encounter a whole new set of rules, which they have to abide by in order to succeed," explains Serbia. "There are the legal factors, the different technology and the bigger competition."

The host says the program spells out all these factors, so Latinos gain confidence and are able to achieve financial independence. But, he says, the information will steer away from being too technical and will be spoken in a simple language that the regular Jose can understand.

"Fifty percent of success is motivation, but the other 50 is knowledge," he says. "Without information on how to market your business, without knowing well the product you are selling or who your customers are, the chances of failure will increase."

In addition to the advice given, viewers can log on the network's Web site, www.Tele, to communicate with Serbia and for a chance to win a one-on-one session with a personal financial planner. The winner will be announced at the end of the series.

Produced by Denise Contreras in Telemundo's Miami studios, El camino al triunfo will air every two to three Saturdays, launching on Aug. 2 and continuing on Aug. 23.

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