In the role, the Bensimon will shoot all of Maxim’s covers, and he will consult on the photographers and images used in the men’s magazine with Guillaume Bruneau, the glossy’s art and design director. Bensimon will report to owner Sardar Biglari, who recently took the title of editor in chief.
A spokesman for the magazine said Biglari’s expanded title merely formalizes his role; Glenn O’Brien continues to hold the title of editor at large. Maxim noted that Bensimon’s new job will not prohibit him from shooting for other magazines that are “not directly competing with Maxim.”
Consumers have already seen Bensimon’s work; the photographer shot the December/January cover of Maxim, which featured a photograph of Alessandra Ambrosio. Maxim said the issue, which debuted a new format and creative direction, sold more than 100,000 single newsstand copies.
“What drew me to Maxim was Sardar’s vision for the brand,” Bensimon said. “Maxim appeals to sophisticated men who appreciate luxury and the finer things in life. We will continue shooting leading, powerful, sexy women as celebrations of their vitality and strength.”
Biglari praised Bensimon’s “artistic work,” adding that the issue has more than doubled sales of recent issues.
In October, the magazine revealed to WWD its plans to lower its rate base from two million to 900,000.
Despite declining newsstand sales, which the Alliance For Audited Media said, went from 131,099 in February to 80,830 in October, Maxim has been able to secure more advertising pages. According to data obtained by WWD from the Publishers Information Bureau, the lad mag nabbed a 63.8 percent increase in ad pages in the January to September period to 246.51.