IPC and NI set for women's titles clash

IPC Media and News International's News Magazines division are set for a multimillion-pound New Year battle for women readers, with both publishers scheduling major launches in January.

More details have emerged of the IPC launch, dubbed "Project Honey", and described by the IPC chief executive, Sylvia Auton, as its "largest ever". The publisher is expected to pitch the weekly title as a mass-market, younger version of Grazia in the vein of Emap's fortnightly, More. Ali Hall, the former More editor, who was poached by IPC a year ago, is leading the project.

Sources at retailers suggest that both IPC and News Magazines have bought shelf space for the launches, which are likely to be around late January for both titles, or mid-February at the latest.

The News Magazines title, dubbed "Project Danii", is expected be to called Lola, taking its name from the first two letters of London and Los Angeles. It will be a News International version of a weekly glossy. Its launch has already been put back by several months.

Maria Trkulja, the former editor of Hello!, was set to be the launch editor of the title, but left News Magazines last month. Sources say that Clare Irving, the former deputy editor of InStyle and OK!, is now in place to edit the title, which is being overseen by Judy Maguire, the editorial director of News Magazines and the former editor of the News of the World's Sunday title.

The launch of Hachette Filipacchi's "Project Kate" title, thought to be another weekly glossy, is said by retail sources to have been put on hold.

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