NEW YORK — While magazines aren’t its primary business, MaxMara’s MM magazine has been able to manage what what many consumer books haven’t: a 20 percent rise in ad sales.

MM magazine, published since 1989, regularly features such photographers as Richard Avedon, Peter Lindbergh, Steven Meisel, Pamela Hansen, Roxanne Lowit, Greg Kadel and Solve Sunsbo. It is published twice a year; the fall issue comes out the second week of July. About 500,000 copies are printed each time.

This story first appeared in the July 1, 2002 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

Fall contains a fashion story on Stella Tenant, shot by Meisel; a profile of artist Joe Eula, who designed the MaxMara eyeglasses logo; a story on an Italian country house, and a profile of Camilla Rutherford, an actress who had a lead in “Gosford Park.” Sunsbo shot the cover, which features model Anne V. The magazine is published in Italian, English, German, Spanish and French.

MM magazine carries advertising for all MaxMara products, as well as non-competitive products. While business (excluding MaxMara’s ads) is up 20 percent from 2001, Giorgio Guidotti, president of public relations and communications worldwide, said MM “is not a money-maker.”

“It’s a great image and branding tool. We did it to create an object that’s more than a catalog.”

The fall issue carries ads from Canali, I Pinco Pallino, Fontanarte, La Perla, L’Oréal, B&B furniture, DuPont and Carita.

MaxMara has 1,250 boutiques in 90 countries. The magazine is sent to customers, given out at the stores, sold on newsstands in Italy for about $3, and sent to 100,000 clients in Italy through its store database.

MM highlights six women’s collections and accessories from the MaxMara Group. Editorial content includes fashion and lifestyle trends, beauty and global news, subjects of general interest and celebrity interviews. Prior issues have profiled Isabella Rossellini, Vanessa Redgrave, Liv Tyler, Sofia Coppola, Cindy Lauper and Laura Dern.

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