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NAME YOUR NUMBER: Nathalie Ayache has sold Numéro magazine, the last remaining publication of her late husband Alain Ayache’s media group, to entrepreneur Paul-Emmanuel Reiffers for an undisclosed sum.
Reiffers, cofounder of advertising agency Mazarine, becomes the sole proprietor of the glossy fashion monthly. Reached by WWD, Reiffers said he planned to keep on the publication’s 25 staffers, including founder and editor in chief Babeth Djian, and develop its digital activities.
This story first appeared in the July 28, 2014 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“I think all high-quality monthly magazines that have a distinct positioning will remain, so there will always be a paper version of the magazine, but of course we will immediately start rethinking the digital version,” he said. “We want to make it more innovative, comprehensive and distinct than those of other magazines.”
Reiffers said he did not predict a conflict of interest with Mazarine, which specializes in luxury brands, with clients including Cartier, Chanel, Valentino, Givenchy and Guerlain.
“The advantage for the magazine is that it has an owner who knows the luxury segment and who will therefore position Numéro like a luxury brand. If you look at what sets it apart, it’s the fact that it’s totally impartial and independent. That is also the reason I did not buy it through Mazarine, but I bought it personally,” he said.
The deal also includes Numéro’s foreign editions under license in China, Russia, Japan and Thailand. “There could be further international editions. We will study any requests on a case-by-case basis, but we won’t sell licenses for the sake of it. We don’t want to damage the brand in any way,” Reiffers said.
The publication posted revenues of about 8 million euros, or $10.6 million, in 2013 and turned a slight profit. All dollar rates are calculated at average exchange for the period to which they refer.
Ayache could not be reached for comment. At its peak in the Nineties, Groupe Alain Ayache counted publications including Le Meilleur, Questions de femmes, Réponse à tout and DS.