TIES TO OBAMA?: Getting your wares on the Obamas might be the only way for a fledgling designer to make a buck right now. Just ask Taylor Latham, daughter of “60 Minutes” correspondent Lesley Stahl and Aaron Latham, who dreamed up the wine-inspired accessories line Little Barrel with her husband, Andrew Major, nearly a year ago. “We started this when the economy was flush,” said Taylor Latham at the company’s launch party on Friday. “No one ever expects to launch in a down economy.” However, Latham, currently a vice president at Double Feature Films, has reason to be optimistic as of late — “[President-elect Barack] Obama’s cameraman [director of video field production Arun Chaudhary] is our friend and apparently he was flashed across CNN wearing our tie today,” said the 31-year-old designer, who sported a patterned headband from her line (while her mother, Lesley, opted for a slackened salmon-colored tie). As to what she plans to send to the stylish first lady-to-be, Ms. Latham said: “Definitely a sash belt. I don’t think she’s quite a ‘headband girl.’” — Nick Axelrod
This story first appeared in the November 11, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
MORE VIDEO ADS ONLINE: Condé Nast Publications is getting ready to expand its ad presence online through a deal with Brightcove, an online video platform. Jane Grenier, vice president for magazine integration, CondéNet, said advertisers will have a few different video options with which to work, such as showing a 15-second video ad alongside a still ad, which will play before an editorially produced video begins. Once the advertising portion of the video is finished, a banner ad will appear on the site, directly below the editorial video.
Advertisers also will be able to do a “sponsor video,” which is intended to showcase the brand in a unique way and be more of an advertorial, as it will not be linked to the editorial content of a magazine’s Web site in any way. “When I talk to marketers, I don’t hear a pullback as much as they are looking for more intelligent investments,” said Grenier. She said it’s too soon to name any advertisers that are interested, adding that visitors to Web sites within Condé Nast (which publishes WWD) won’t “see the full video effect” until the first quarter of next year. The first sites to launch with Brightcove include wired.com, portfolio.com, glamour.com, parade.com and self.com. — Amy Wicks
TRIBUNE IN THE RED: A few days after Tribune Co. reported record-breaking page views on the Web and a major boost in circulation following Election Day, the company had bleaker news to report: its third-quarter earnings. Its publishing division, which includes the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune, reported an operating revenue decline of 13 percent to $654 million, while ad revenue fell 19 percent. Retail advertising was down 10 percent during the period and national ad revenue fell 21 percent. Circulation revenue also was down 2 percent and the largest revenue declines were in Chicago, Hartford and Los Angeles.
Tribune Co. had a net loss of $121.6 million compared with net income of $152.8 million (which includes restructuring charges and declines in advertising), and revenues fell 10.5 percent to $1 billion. — A.W.
FIGHTING FIRE WITH FIRE: Uma Thurman: actress, activist and firefighter?
When the fire alarm went off several times at Glamour Magazine and Tag Heuer’s “What Are You Made Of?” awards on Monday morning at Per Se in Manhattan’s Time Warner Center, Thurman, an event co-host, shot up out of her seat, ready to save the day.
But, alas, after interrupting the awards — which recognize women who accomplish extraordinary things in their communities across the country — no fewer than three times, the building’s fire safety director announced there was no fire, which Thurman lauded with two thumbs up.
“How many of you are worried about your breakfast?” deadpanned Ulrich Wohn, president and chief executive officer in North America of LVMH Watch & Jewelry.
Jenny Hwa, founder of eco-apparel firm Loyale; Sonja Okun, founder of Guardian Nurses Healthcare Advocates; Kezia Koo, who built a financial analysis system for Mercy Corp. and Marya Garskof, who organized Arizona’s first run for Congo Women, were celebrated with a video montage depicting their humanitarian work and each were given a Tag Heuer watch. — Sophia Chabbott