Whispers of Condé Nast’s eventual restructuring have long lingered in the halls of One World Trade, as the company brought in Jim Norton, an AOL executive to reorganize its business side last fall.
Around the same time, in October, Condé said it would combine its creative, copy and research teams, but it had not yet installed the structure. On Thursday, the company confirmed that it let go of a “handful” of employees, as it clustered the creative teams under Raul Martinez. The layoffs, which also included some copy editors, coincided with the staffers’ move to the 22nd floor where it would create a centralized operation.
Even though those plans were more or less clear, and in the works for months, any hint of layoffs set staffers off on Thursday, with many sounding alarm bells that something more was imminent.
Despite the fact that the rumor mill was churning on overdrive, the big cut has yet to take place. That cut is said to include a reduction of magazine publishers, as well as a steep slash in headcount in the marketing and corporate sales teams. Those teams had reported to Edward Menicheschi, the president of Condé Nast Media Group, until he exited the company when Norton was brought in as chief business officer and president of revenue. The publishers and the marketing and corporate sales teams now all report to Norton.
The larger and much more fundamental restructuring of Condé Nast is said to take place as soon as next week, and will be engineered by Norton.
In setting the table for 2017 and its continued digital evolution, Condé shuttered Self Magazine in print late last year, and it also reduced the frequency of Teen Vogue from nine issues to four. Jill Bright, the company’s chief administrative officer departed the company with Menicheschi, and Charles Townsend retired from the role of company chairman.
Chief executive officer Bob Sauerberg also instilled a sort of executive team, which reports directly to him. They include artistic director Anna Wintour; David Geithner, chief financial officer; Norton; Dawn Ostroff, president of Condé Nast Entertainment; Fred Santarpia, chief digital officer; JoAnn Murray, chief human resources officer, and Cameron Blanchard, chief communications officer.