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Multiplatform Publisher News: Revamping Revenue Structure, Investments, and Staff Changes

Multiplatform publisher news for keeping up with a changing industry

We begin today’s multiplatform publisher news with a look at Condé Nast, who is making a big move by eliminating the role of publishers. minOnline has the story, who says “The reorganization — anticipated even before the cross-title combination of creative, research, copy teams in October — adds new capabilities to the publisher. These include the division of sales between brand-specific and industry-specific teams, and the creation of a new events and experience business. It also eliminates the Condé Nast Media Group (CNMG), which previously oversaw ad programs spanning multiple titles.”

“The new structure comes as publishers across the industry look to consolidate resources and find more efficient ways to bring in revenues. Similar overhauls at other magazine companies, including the elimination of publishers at Time Inc., have eliminated brand silos while giving advertisers simplified access to multiple magazine titles.”

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The article continues by discussing how publishers have been repositioned into new roles. “Six publishers were repositioned into the newly created role of Chief Business Officer, a multi-brand position that focuses on revenues and client relationships at set titles…In addition to the business officer role, Condé Nast has added industry-specific ad sales, under the leadership of Chief Industry Officers. This position is much like the “category sales” created by Time Inc. in a similar restructuring last July.”

Next, we’re looking at Salon Media Group, which has received an investment from Spear Point. Folio: has the story. “Spear Point Capital Management has invested $1 million into Salon Media Group. The deal, which closed last Friday, gives the public-equity firm 29 percent of the common stock for the 22-year-old publicly held web magazine.”

“Spear Point isn’t new to the media game. The activist hedge fund, which invests primarily in publicly traded companies with less than $2.0 billion in market capitalization, holds about 5 percent stake in TheStreet.com, according to New York Post.”

The article continues with news on some new management from Spear Point. “Along with the investment come three new board members — Spear Point managing partners Ron Bienvenu and Trevor Colhoun, and Dick MacWilliams, who will serve as chairman.”

On the topic of staff changes, we’re seeing news out of Meredith Corp. Folio: has the story. “Just one week removed from a quarterly earnings report touting “record-breaking” company revenue, Meredith Corp. has laid off 40 staffers, a company spokesman confirmed to Folio:.”

“The cuts represent just over 1 percent of the 3,800 employees at the women’s publishing giant, whose brands include Better Homes and GardensParents, and Shape, among several others. The company declined to provide specifics on which roles were eliminated in this latest round of restructuring — which arrives about 15 months after a similar culling of around 40 staffers in late 2015 — but did note that half of those let go are located in Meredith’s New York office, where much of the Des Moines, Iowa-based company’s sales and marketing talent is concentrated.”

The article continues by considering the current positioning of Meredith. “The reorganization comes at a time of heightened speculation over a potential Meredith-Time Inc. merger, rumors that helped drive both companies’ stock prices to 52-week highs in recent weeks. Bloomberg reported on January 5 that Meredith had officially approached Time Inc. to express interest in such a deal, but both sides have remained tight-lipped since.”

We wish the best to all of these multiplatform publishers making moves.

Posted in Digital Publishing Trends

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