BREAKING OUT: In its quest to become more of a lifestyle brand, Andrew Marc is shaking up its advertising. Its fall campaign, shot by Patrick Demarchelier, takes the urban-friendly collection into the great outdoors. Styled by Laura Ferrara, the ads were photographed at the Mohonk Mountain House, in upstate New York. The idea was to explore contrasts by shooting urban clothes in a decidedly rugged environment. The campaign was created by Alex Gonzalez, creative director of AR New York, in collaboration with Chris Gbur, creative director of Andrew Marc. Featured in the campaign are Rianne Ten Haken and male model Cheyne Oglesby.
Andrew Marc, a division of G-III Apparel Group since 2008, began as an outerwear firm and has subsequently added such categories as handbags, dresses and tailored clothing. The overall ad budget is up 35 percent for fall, with additional print magazines and increased spending for outdoor and digital opportunities. Beginning in September and running through the fall, ads will appear in Vogue, Elle, GQ, Vanity Fair, Wired and Condé Nast Traveler. New for fall will be Harper’s Bazaar, Men’s Health, New York magazine, C magazine and The Wall Street Journal.
— Lisa Lockwood
MORE TURMOIL FOR RDA: Five years after Reader’s Digest Association was sold to a private equity firm for $2.4 billion, and a year after emerging from bankruptcy, the company is back on the block, and sources believe this time around a deal could be valued at around $1 billion. The question is: Who would pay such a price?
Speculation swirled it might be Hearst when Hearst Magazines president David Carey was spotted last week in RDA’s offices on Third Avenue. Not so fast, though — a Hearst spokeswoman dismissed the speculation, noting that Carey was there to meet with magazine distributor CDS Global’s chief executive officer Malcolm Netburn, and RDA is one of CDS’ major clients.
Whether the buyer swallows RDA as a whole or breaks it up, it will inherit a corporate culture that has changed dramatically since the days when Ripplewood paid a hefty price for the firm in 2006. The company moved its headquarters from bucolic Chappaqua in Westchester to Midtown Manhattan and emerged from Chapter 11 in 2010; more recently, a new board was appointed, and ceo Mary Berner was succeeded by colleague Tom Williams, leading to yet another change in corporate culture.
The potential RDA sale was first reported by The Wall Street Journal, although whoever buys the firm faces major challenges. Circulation of RDA’s titles, which include the flagship magazine and Everyday with Rachael Ray, have been seesawing, and the company recently reported a net loss of $81 million on revenues of $326 million for the first quarter ended March 31.
— AMY WICKS
NEWS FROM THE COAST: Jessica Joffe, the model and sometimes actress; Band of Outsiders’ Scott Sternberg, and former W editor Kevin West like to jam together in Los Angeles. You won’t read about it in Rolling Stone, however, because it’s not a music thing. The trio likes to meet up at farmers markets around the city and make fruit jam, in addition to pickling, brining and fermenting. Leave it to Adam Rapoport’s new celebrity-infused Bon Appétit to highlight this kind of thing, with a feature that shows the attractive bunch drinking fizzy raspberry shrub cocktails and presumably talking about peach preserves, or something.
West is big on the subject, and since leaving his full-time gig at W, he’s been blogging his “path to preservation” and writing a book about canning and preserving that is just about done. It will be published in June 2012. “There is this jam scene in L.A.,” said West. “It’s a weekend hobby that quickly became an obsession for many of us.”