Alejandro Sanz and pop group Maldita Nerea have won five nominations each of the Premios 40 Principales awards run by Spanish media giant's Grupo Prisa's international radio arm, Union Radio.

The prizes cover eight Latin American countries where Los 40 Principales leads the music radio Top 40 formats, plus Spain where it is the most listened to national music network with more than 4.2 million daily listeners.

Los 40 Principales director Jaume Baró told the Oct. 15 presentation of candidates that "these awards are the only ones of their genre in Spain and Latin America voted entirely by the public."

Votes can be made via web site from Oct. 16 for seven weeks until midnight Dec. 3. Last year more than 1 million fans voted. The gala ceremony will take place in Madrid Dec. 10, and artists confirmed to perform so far include Kylie Minogue, Maná, Juanes and Alejandro Sanz.

"These awards are a reference brand for music in this country and much of Latin America where Union Radio is present", says Luis Merino, music director at Union Radio. "This will be a popular vote by the people - we work always under the intense gaze of our audience."

Union Radio's Los 40 Principales is market leader in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Costa Rica, Guatemala and Mexico, and each country will select its best act.

"Union Radio is present in the U.S. Latin market where we aspire to become market leader, as well as in Brazil," says Merino. "It is a question of time. The backbone of these important Los 40 prizes is Spain and the Latin world."

Miguel Bosé won three nominations in the Spain section, and artists with two nominations include Dani Martin, singer of El Canto del Loco who has made a solo album, David Bisbal, Estopa, and Pignoise.

In the international section, Mexico's Camila has three nods, while David Guetta, Kesha, Lady Gaga, Shakira, Juanes and Diego Torres have two each.

The premios are sponsored by international whiskey firm Ballentine's, and money from entrance fees will go to two charities - the Anar Foundation, and the African Foundation for Medicine and Research (AMREF).

The nominations for the 19 categories were selected by a Cadena SER (Prisa's radio brand in Spain) committee. All nominated artists must have appeared on Los 40 Principales at least once between Oct. 15, 2009, and Sep. 30, 2010.