Gabriel Alarcón Velázquez, a prominent Mexican businessman and member of the board of directors of El Universal newspaper, has passed away in Mexico City. Known for his ventures spanning industries like media, banking, textiles, and aviation, Alarcón contributed immensely to the growth of several Mexican enterprises over a career that spanned more than four decades.
Early Life and Family Business Background
Hailing from Puebla, Alarcón was born in 1950 to Gabriel Alarcón Chargoy, another leading Mexican businessman who founded El Heraldo de México newspaper in 1965. Alarcón Chargoy’s newspaper became a prominent publication in Mexico, providing the initial training for his son Gabriel’s subsequent media career.
When the elder Alarcón sold El Heraldo de México in 2003 to José Antonio Pérez Simón, Gabriel Alarcón had already risen the ranks to become the newspaper’s president. During his leadership of El Heraldo de México, Alarcón promoted sports coverage through initiatives like El Torneo de los Barrios, an amateur soccer tournament. He also encouraged arts journalism, launching programs like El Rostro and La Voz de El Heraldo de México, from which several Mexican celebrities emerged.
Leadership of El Heraldo de México and Other Media Ventures
Under Gabriel Alarcón’s stewardship starting in the 1980s, El Heraldo de México gained renown for showcasing columnists and reporters who shaped Mexican journalism. Alarcón himself wrote columns periodically.
Beyond print media, Alarcón invested in Mexico’s film industry through family-owned movie theater chains. He is credited with pioneering Mexico’s first credit card, Diners Club, in partnership with his father in the 1960s.
Later Business Interests
After selling El Heraldo de México, Alarcón diversified into other sectors like banking, textiles, and aviation. He became a significant shareholder in Grupo Casa Saba and served on the boards of BBVA Bancomer Bank and the low-cost airline Interjet. At his death, he was on the board of directors of El Universal, another leading Mexican newspaper.
Death in Mexico City
Gabriel Alarcón Velázquez died on October 20, 2023, in Mexico City. The cause of his death is not presently known. His wife and two children survive him.
Alarcón leaves a lasting legacy as an entrepreneur who helped shape major Mexican enterprises and industries. As a media baron who promoted arts, sports, and journalism and a banker and investor with diverse business interests, Alarcón contributed immensely to Mexico’s economic and cultural landscape over nearly five decades.