A funny thing this morning: lots of odd magazine news. I mean, I imagine that the world of magazines is always chock-full of hot gossip and raging acquisitions, but today’s stories all seem to have a common thread — I’m just not sure what it is.
First Curtco (you’ve heard of them, surely) is up for sale. The publishers of fine ‘zines like The Robb Report is looking to be sold for somewhere in the neighborhood of $500 million. The 20-odd magazines owned by the publisher are targeted toward the very wealthy. Well, rich people have to read, too.
The reason for the sale, according to the New York Times, is fascinating: apparently too many companies have approached current owner William J. Curtis for him to keep the business. He’ll be sad to see it go, but, hey, popularity matters. And though the ranks the ultra-rich are growing, one wonders if a guy who really loves his magazine business walks away for a mere $500 million if he’s having such a good time.
Over on the other side of the demographic beach, we have Martha Stewart launching a new magazine called Blueprint geared toward reasonably affluent women in the 25-45 range. The new mag will be a mix of home and fashion news. I think.
Stories in the premier issue include a spread on dancing shoes and recreating summer camp in your home.
Okay then. Good idea, but does it really fit today’s lifestyles?
Now, over at Hearst, they’re looking for a new editor-in-chief for Good Housekeeping, a nice, solid brand with checkout counter appeal but declining sales. If you ask me, it’s because all their covers look the same. Then we have Daily Candy putting itself up for sale. They’re looking at a $100 million price tag.
Though CurtCo has a robust web business (who knew the yacht crowd is so into, well, yacht sales), Daily Candy is the only home grown, by-the-boostraps web entity. Unlike the print publications which fight for shelf space — where, I wonder, will they fit another female-oriented print magazine? — Daily Candy comes to your inbox without fail every morning (certain holidays excepted). It’s a fast read and you either click on a link for a product or you delete. No muss, no fuss.
Is it worth a hundred mil? History will judge, but at least the buyer of DC is getting a virtually debt-free entity with low overhead costs. Oh, and, a daily readership of 1.2 million and growing.
Oh, yeah, all this is my way of saying that email is back, baby. Email is back.