IPC Media has taken an axe to its magazine portfolio, closing six
titles along with its exhibitions business, IPC Live!, in a cull that
has sent shockwaves through the publishing industry.
One hundred and fifteen jobs will go following the closures, which
include the 74-year-old monthly Woman's Journal and the recently
relaunched women's weekly Your Life. Your Garden, Homes & Ideas and
Marie Claire Health and Beauty complete the list. Complete Guide to
Pregnancy will cease to be a standalone publication and will be folded
back into Practical Parenting.
The closures come less than a month after the completion of a £1.15 billion takeover of IPC by the global media giant AOL Time Warner.
Media buyers predicted that AOL was initiating an aggressive
streamlining of the business, with weaker titles stripped out to free up
investment for healthier brands.
"We will continue to review our businesses and the performance and
profitability of all our titles as an integral part of the management of
our portfolio," IPC's chief executive, Sly Bailey, said.
The closure of Woman's Journal represents a drastic climbdown from the
summer, when IPC extracted an apology from one trade paper for claiming
that the title was about to fold. The demise of the magazine has been
predicted for some time after it became clear that the initial successes
achieved by Elsa McAlanon, the magazine's award-winning editor, could
not be sustained without substantial covermounting.
The axing of the mature women's weekly Your Life comes almost exactly a
month after the title was relaunched as a glossy with an above-the-line
campaign through Roose & Partners.
"Buying circulation is an expensive route and some of these titles had
become addicted to it," PHD's head of press, Laura James, said. "It's
questionable how they would have fared in the downturn."