LET IT BE: Bulking up its portfolio of glossies, which includes Elle, Lagardère Active’s new weekly, Be, hit newsstands March 19, with a print run of 160,000 copies. The inaugural issue — which features Vanessa Paradis on the cover and editorial content that spans news, beauty and fashion to “psycho-sexo” articles — will be sold at the promotional price of 1 euro, or $1.37 at current exchange, and in a month will change to a cover price of 1.50 euro, or $2.06. The 172-page debut issue contains 60 pages of ads from the likes of Chanel, Repetto, Lancôme and Lolita Lempicka. Be joins a highly competitive market among French weeklies, with other recent additions including Mondadori’s Grazia and Marie Claire’s Envy. Lagardère Active preempted the release of its latest title with the launch of Be’s Web site, be.com, and a mobile telephone application. — Natasha Montrose
GRAZIA’S NEW DIMENSIONS: First the movies, now magazines. The stories in this week’s edition of U.K. Grazia are set to jump off the page. The issue, which features London-based singer Florence Welch of Florence and The Machine on the cover, has had certain pages embedded with codes that activate augmented reality technology, so that when the pages are held up to a computer’s Web cam or to an iPhone, 3-D content from the issue will appear on the screen. It’s not the first time a magazine has used the device — InStyle in the U.S. has used it both on edit and ad pages.
As for Grazia, the code on the cover activates a 3-D image of Welch dancing as she sings her recent U.K. hit “You’ve Got the Love.” The codes in the issue will also unlock on-screen features such as spring trends from Grazia’s editors, a smoky eye makeup how-to by makeup artist Lisa Eldridge and a campaign for Banana Republic’s chinos. Grazia has also launched an iPhone application, which will show additional content, such as Welch spinning around in 3-D. Grazia worked with Wardenclyffe, a U.S.-based interactive creative agency, on the project. The issue hits U.K. newsstands today. — Nina Jones
GOING DIGITAL: Instead of figuring out how digital can be incorporated into the magazine, BlackBook has set out to do the opposite — and it may lessen the magazine’s importance to its business in the process. The March issue was inspired by a denim app, which searches for the top picks in denim around neighborhoods in New York and Los Angeles. BlackBook works with advertisers such as AG, Intermix and John Varvatos on its apps to provide coupons that will drive consumers into stores (where they can show the coupon from their mobile device to receive discounted purchases, instead of buying online). “We’ve seen an increase in traffic and sales related to the application and believe this is going to be a growing opportunity in ways to talk to consumers,” said Khajak Keledjian, chief executive officer of Intermix.
This story first appeared in the March 23, 2010 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
BlackBook has also worked with outside media entities, such as Elle and Bravo, on a similar ad model, using BlackBook as a core.
Ceo Ari Horowitz said ad revenue from the magazine and from digital is running about 50-50, but in a year’s time, he expects 90 percent of ad revenue to come from the digital business and 10 percent from print, making the magazine more of a supplement to all digital efforts. — Amy Wicks
A LARGER ABODE: As Dwell magazine nears its 10th anniversary in October, the shelter title will introduce a new division, special interest publications, an iPhone app and a new name for the company, Dwell Media. The name reflects Dwell’s expansion into digital, TV, a design conference, a home collection and now a strategy and research division that will soon release a top 50 brand rankings list, as defined by those with household incomes of more than $100,000. The company will also unveil its “new face of affluence study” in seminars in New York and Los Angeles this month.
Meanwhile, the magazine will continue publishing 10 issues a year. Advertising was hard to come by last year and Dwell posted a 44 percent decline in paging. But president and publisher Michela O’Connor Abrams said the May issue is up 13 percent, making it the largest issue since last May. In February, dwell.com reached an all-time high of 3.2 million page views, three times as high as this time last year. — A.W.
NEW HIRE: Christian Langbein is starting at HL Group as assistant vice president today. At HL, Langbein’s task is to focus on developing fashion and luxury goods businesses, and build the company’s stable of emerging talent. He will report to partners Lynn Tesoro, Guillermo Zalamea and Hamilton South. Langbein joins from Barneys New York, where he worked in the fashion office, reporting to senior vice president and fashion director Julie Gilhart. — Marc Karimzadeh