Jennifer Lopez has teamed up with Verizon Wireless to launch a new mobile brand, which includes retail stores tailored for the Latino market. Viva Movil is already selling smartphones, tablets, and Verizon wireless plans on their own website. More than a dozen stores in cities with large Latino populations including L.A. and Miami are expected to open in the next few weeks. The first retail store will open in New York on June 15th.
“It was a no-brainer to finally cater to an overlooked segment of the population that has emerged, to actually do something that caters specifically to them,” said Lopez.
Viva Movil’s store design and social content are developed with Latino customers in mind. Store employees will speak English and Spanish. The stores will also have play areas equipped there because Latinos often shop together as families.
Jennifer Lopez and Verizon announced the partnership at the CTIA wireless industry trade show in Las Vegas on Wednesday. Lopez is a majority owner of Viva Movil and serves as the chief creative officer of the company. Lopez said that the Latino population has grown 43% in the last five years compared to the 5% growth for non-Latinos. Latinos currently make up around 16% of the U.S. population and the figure is expected to grow to 30% by 2050.
Devices and plans that are sold by Viva Movil are the same as Verizon’s. Verizon does not own a stake in Viva Movil. Viva Movil can buy the iPhone 5, Galaxy S3, and the BlackBerry Z10. Customers can also sign up for the Verizon 4G LTE network service. Verizon pointed out that the Latino customer base represented around $1.2 trillion in buying power last year.