Not anywhere close to being out of the blue yet and still struggling from financial hardships and changing platforms, the magazine industry is gearing up for exciting new changes for 2011.
The four largest magazine companies in the U.S. will have new leaders for 2011, according to the New York Times article, In Magazine World, a New Crop of Chiefs.
This past summer, Time Inc. replaced its chief executive Ann Moore after eight years of work, with Jack Griffin. Griffin had led the publishing company, Meredith’s, magazine division. Time Inc. is one of the leading publishers of magazines in the U.S., publishing 21 magazines and 25 websites including People, Life, Time, Entertainment Weekly, etc.
At Meredith, who publishes female-orientated publications and owns 21 subscription magazine titles and over 150 newsstand titles, Tom Harty was promoted after Griffin’s departure.
At Conde Nast, the magazine giant who owns such titles as Vogue and The New Yorker, the dual president and chief executive Charles H. Townsend handed over his job to Robert Sauerberg. Also departing Conde Nast was David Carey, who moved to lead Hearst Magazines. Carey replaced Cathleen Black, a fixture in the industry for over three decades, who is now attempting to move her career politically towards New York City Schools Chancellor. Hearst is part of the Hearst Corporation and owns magazine giants ranging from Cosmopolitan to Esquire.
The interesting aspect of these new executives is that many of them are comparatively young to corporate standards. All younger than 50, many of them have also come from outside the companies they are now heading.
The industry hasn’t seen such a rapid change since the mid 1990s, when it was facing a similar economic front.
“This is the changing of the guard from an older school to a newer school,” said Justin B. Smith, president of the Atlantic Media Company. It seems that these changes are purposeful. By bringing in a younger generation of leaders, hopefully the publishing industry will also be bringing in new ideas and energy to combat the ever-changing industry and what 2011 will bring. These new “chiefs” could be exactly what the industry has been looking for.