Time unveils plans for Wallpaper.com

An online version of trendy interiors and design magazine Wallpaper will spearhead Time’s assault on the European internet advertising market.

An online version of trendy interiors and design magazine Wallpaper

will spearhead Time’s assault on the European internet advertising

market.



The US-based publisher, part of the Time Warner empire, has appointed an

international internet chief to boost its presence on the web. Doris

Sohmen becomes new-media director for Time International. She will be

based in London.



Time already has a US site, Time.com, and an online version of its

Fortune magazine. It also has Asian sites such as Time Asia, Asiaweek

and Asia Now, the last being a joint venture with CNN. But Sohmen

admitted that the company’s European web presence was ’not highly

developed at all’.



The Wallpaper site will launch before the end of the year and is

expected to generate revenue from a mixture of advertising and

e-commerce. Sohmen was unable to offer further details.



Time’s decision to use Wallpaper as a launch pad for its European online

expansion echoes its strategy when it bought the magazine in 1997. At

the time, the move signalled the company’s determination to strengthen

its presence outside the US. The magazine has a circulation of more than

100,000.



Also on the cards are an online version of the Atlantic edition of Time,

which covers Europe, and a European extension of the partnership with

CNN.



Sohmen joined the company in 1997 to set up the Asian sites. Earlier

this year she moved to London as new-media director for Time Atlantic,

working with sales teams to develop online extensions of advertising

campaigns.



She has now been handed a global remit.



’Up until now we have been able to offer European clients a targeted

inventory on our American sites but - as we have found with our

magazines - we realise we must create sites for European audiences if

they are to be truly relevant,’ she said.



Sohmen added that as well as generating additional advertising revenue,

the move would enable the publisher to build its brand online.



Sohmen has been involved in the internet since 1993, when she worked for

Price Waterhouse as a consultant specialising in helping traditional

media companies move onto the web. She was also a financial analyst at

Hearst New Media.



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