It’s been a rip-roaring rollercoaster ride for magazines this year. A host of executive-level management overhauls, editorial shake-ups, the closure of two major titles and the launch of a women’s monthly, topped off by the sale of Australia’s most iconic publishing house, have all made 2012 a watershed year by anyone’s standards.
The biggest news was surely ACP Magazines’ sale to German publishing house, Bauer, and its subsequent rebranding as Bauer Media. ACP, which was founded as Australian Consolidated Press in 1936 by Frank Packer, merged with the Nine Network in 1994 and was subsequently offloaded to private equity firm CVC Capital Partners in 2007. Its earnings almost halved in the proceeding four years, prompting CVC’s search for a buyer.
Bauer snapped up the business in September for $500m, giving it rein over 48 titles including market-leaders The Australian Women’s Weekly, Cleo and Cosmopolitan. The move was met with praise across the industry, with legendary Women’s Weekly editor Ita Buttrose and former Cleo editor Mia Freedman publicly voicing their support for the deal.
One day after the sale announcement, ACP launched the long awaited Women’s Fitness magazine – anticipated to be the first real competitor to Pacific Magazines’ Women’s Health.
In October the publisher also has snared a deal to publish all of Weight Watchers’ print assets after the brand parted ways with Pacific Magazines. The publisher won out in a competitive pitch against rivals NewsLifeMedia and incumbent Pacific Magazines.
But 2012 also saw some major titles cut. ACP brought the axe down on blokes title FHM in March after its sales dropped almost 50% in the last six months of 2011, while the same publisher’s much-anticipated launch of Elle was shelved until further notice.
NewsLifeMedia also scrapped its monthly MasterChef Magazine, following a circulation decline of nearly 40% year-on-year in the first half. The title had been running for just over two years.
When it came to the industry’s leadership, things went into flux. Matt Stanton took over from Phil Scott as CEO of ACP Magazines in January, followed by the resignation of NewsLifeMedia CEO Sandra Hook who was promptly replaced with XYZ Networks’ GM of Lifestyle channels, Nicole Sheffield. The former TV dynamo flew into spring-clean mode, reviewing personnel and procedures across the business.
As Sheffield put her stamp on the company her first casualty was Vogue editor-in-chief of 13 years, Kirstie Clements. Clements was sacked in mid-May in favour of ACP’s Harper’s Bazaar editor Edwina McCann, believed to have a fresher, younger approach to content and technology. Following McCann’s exit, ACP promoted Grazia editor Kellie Hush to take the reins at Harpers.
On the sales side, NewsLifeMedia commercial director Zara Curtis quit her post in June to take up the role of general manager at FremantleMedia’s branded content division, Spring. Three months later, director of sales at ACP, Louise Barrett, left the publisher for a similar role in TV at the Ten Network. National sales manager Leigh Monti was promoted to Barrett’s post at ACP, while SheSpot’s Miffy Coady replaced Curtis at NewsLifeMedia.
Meanwhile over at the industry body for magazine publishers – Magazine Publishers of Australia (MPA) – existing chairman, CEO of Pacific Magazines Nick Chan, handed the top job over to Matt Stanton, CEO of ACP. MPA also appointed former CEO of Freeview, Robin Parkes, as executive director in September, signalling the magazine industry’s zealous new commitment to self promotion.
The Audit Bureau of Circulations revealed significant positive movement in the sales of home and lifestyle titles in the year’s first half, as well as year-on-year circulation increases for many of the tween titles, some high fashion rags and numerous special interest titles. Nevertheless, the market dropped an overall 4.2% in the six months to June, spearheaded by the decline of MasterChef Magazine.
Amidst the mounting importance of digital in the survival of magazine publishing, ACP, Pacific Magazines and NewsLifeMedia teamed with Google Play in October to launch titles in high definition digital for Android. This move allows readers to purchase online versions of magazines from all major publishers via Google Play’s Magazines App for Android.
Please login with linkedin to comment
SCA has announced the appointment of Cathrine McVeigh to head of audio production and operations. She will be part of the content leadership team. In the newly created role, McVeigh will oversee the creation of SCA’s new audio production and content operations hub and lead a combined team across the country to deliver a rapidly […]
Last night’s footy match between Brisbane and Geelong was the most-watched non-news of the night, nabbing a nice 582,000 viewers for Seven. In recent weeks, MasterChef has dominated the Thursday night entertainment, but last night slotted in the ratings behind both the footy and The Chase to score 541,000 viewers overall. Seven News came out on top […]
Google has officially announced it will be delaying the deprecation of third-party cookies, pushing the changes back to 2023. When Google first announced it would be getting rid of cookies on Chrome back in early 2020, some questioned the feasibility of the proposed timeline of two years. In an announcement on Thursday, Google’s privacy engineering […]
We’ve dished out plenty of reminders, but believe us when we say that NOW is the time to submit your entry for B&T’s inaugural Best of the Best Awards. If you’re still going on your submission, it’s time to hit the panic button (but make sure you also hit the ‘submit’ button). And, if you’re confident […]
Southern Cross Austereo and Network 10 have agreed to a two-year regional affiliation deal. The deal will come into play on July 1, and see 10 extend the content it broadcasts from Channel 10, 10 Bold, 10 Peach and 10 Shake into areas of regional Queensland, Southern New South Wales, and Victoria. 10 currently has […]
During the penultimate day of Cannes Lions Live, Cannes Lions has announced the winners of a slew of categories. The Brand Experience and Activation Lions, Creative Business Transformation Lions, Creative eCommerce Lions, Creative Effectiveness Lions, Mobile Lions, Innovation Lions, and Radio & Audio Lions winners were all announced in the Awards Show, streamed from Cannes, […]
At Zavy, we track the movings and shakings of brands across a range of industries on our social scoreboards. We want to see brands use social media as a space for real brand building and connecting with people – after all, that’s what it was created for. In their ground-breaking advertising report, The Long and […]
Cummins&Partners has redefined what the next decade will look like for Chobani in its new brand campaign Food Made Good. Building on the four years of partnership between Cummins&Partners and Chobani, this campaign was born through strategic leadership to uncover the truth at the core of the brand and bring it to life through a […]
Japanese rescue crews and journalists have been left red-faced after they arrived to a report of a woman drowning in a local harbour only to discover it was a life-like sex doll bobbing about in the water. The incident happened in the harbour city of Hachinohe on Japan’s north-east coast. “The woman” in the water […]
me&u, Australia’s first and leading mobile ordering and payment platform, has appointed Clementine Churchill as Head of Marketing as they continue to drive rapid growth and expansion in Australia and new international markets. A highly experienced marketing leader and recognised industry thought leader, Churchill joins me&u from My Muscle Chef, one of Australia’s top rated […]
MILO is on the search for Australia’s best made MILO, calling on fans to share their creations for the chance to win #TheMILOCup, via Ogilvy Sydney. This integrated campaign follows on from the success of last year’s ‘Hot v Cold’ campaign, which encouraged Aussies to settle the debate on whether MILO is best enjoyed hot […]
New research from Getty Images, a world leader in visual communications, has found that LGBTQ+ representation in ANZ remains low and stereotypical. It’s 2021 – this needs to change – especially in marketing and advertising. In partnership with GLAAD, the LGBTQ+ media advocacy organisation, Getty Images has launched a full-spectrum Guidebook in direct response to […]
Natural historian Sir David Attenborough is one of the most commanding and respected storytellers in the world and now the iconic series, David Attenborough Life Stories, is available on LiSTNR as part of SCA’s recently announced partnership with the BBC. David Attenborough Life Stories is a series of talks on the natural histories of creatures and […]
Menulog has doubled down on its marketing support for restaurant partners, with the promotion of Senior Marketing Manager, Rami Tamer, to a newly created role of ‘Head of Partner Marketing’, as well as the promotion of former-Blue 449 Performance Manager, Jaryd Buggins. In the new Head of Partner Marketing role, Rami will lead a team […]
ARN has announced Barry Drinkwater will be handing over his content director reins at 97.3FM and 4KQ to respected radio executive, Alisson Longhurst. Drinkwater has had a stellar career in radio spanning more than four decades, and was acknowledged as one of Australia’s Top 20 Content Directors by Radio Today in 2020. He began his radio career […]
Australia’s largest social enterprise is turning 25. On the anniversary of Australia’s first Big Issue magazine being sold on the steps of Melbourne’s Flinders Street Station in June 1996, Town Square has created a campaign to mark the occasion. 25 Years Big is a celebratory statement of pride, rendered in the iconic Big Issue logo […]
The Australian commercial radio industry has joined a global working group of broadcasters, carmakers and tech experts collaborating on the innovation of radio in Android Automotive. Android Automotive is Google’s infotainment operating system which is being built into new connected cars. Industry body Commercial Radio Australia is part of the working group, led by the […]