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EXTENDING THE HOUSE?: Is Condé Nast Publications eyeing Dwell? Though some might argue the company has its hands full with its homegrown shelter titles — in recent months, it’s folded House & Garden, expanded Vogue Living, and seen its three-year-old launch Domino struggle to weather a category-wide slump — sources close to the company said acquisition talks with Dwell were on.
The San Francisco-based magazine has remained independent under founder and owner Lara Hedberg Deam. Michela O’Connor Abrams, president and publisher, told WWD, “I have not been involved in any discussions with Condé Nast.” A spokeswoman for Condé Nast, which also owns WWD, declined comment.
Condé Nast chairman S.I. Newhouse Jr. has praised the magazine to employees, said several people privy to the conversations. One person familiar with the negotiations said they began in December and quoted the figure of $30 million as an asking price.
Founded in 2000, Dwell has grown steadily to a rate base of 325,000, picking up a National Magazine Award for General Excellence in 2005 and ending 2007 with 1,325.76 ad pages, flat from the year before. The magazine revealed a redesign in its February issue, featuring a new trim size and the use of recycled paper. — Irin Carmon
NO SHOW: The Women’s Campaign Forum, a nonpartisan organization that supports pro-choice female politicians, was missing a guest at its annual gala Monday night in Midtown Manhattan — Silda Spitzer, wife of New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer, who could be forced to resign from his post after news broke Monday in The New York Times of his involvement with a high-end prostitution ring. The WCF event was sponsored by Glamour and included a cocktail hour at Christie’s followed by separate private dinners at 14 homes across Manhattan cooked by notable chefs. Silda Spitzer was to attend the dinner at the home of Al Jackson and Deborah Buresh Jackson, along with Forbes.com executive editor David Andelman and Lisa Caputo, Citi chief marketing officer, among others. Those who did show buzzed about the sex scandal over dinner. At the home of Marjorie and Michael Loeb, guests included Spike Lee, who was eager to see what the cheeky editors at the New York Post would use for a headline to reference Spitzer (The end result? “Ho No!”); Donny Deutsch; Vanity Fair’s Amy Fine Collins; former Gianfranco Ferré designer Lars Nilsson (who remained mum on what his next gig would be); Manhattan borough president Scott Stringer and Marshall Loeb, former editor of the Columbia Journalism Review, and former managing editor of Fortune and Money. — Stephanie D. Smith