Condé Nast to Cease Teen Vogue in Print, Cut 80 Jobs and Lower Mag Frequencies

The publisher continues to slash costs as it builds up its digital business.

Condé Nast is expected to complete its final round of cuts by next Thursday, WWD has learned.

The New York-based publisher, which has instilled a hiring freeze, will slash about 80 jobs, equal to a decrease of about 2.5 percent of its 3,000-person workforce. Budgets across departments are also expected to get a haircut, with the worst-performing divisions and magazines getting cuts of up to 20 percent.

As part of that mandate, Condé is reducing the frequencies of most of its titles and will shutter Teen Vogue in print. Monthly titles Vanity Fair, Vogue, Wired and The New Yorker, which publishes weekly, will not see any frequency changes. Brides, which runs six times a year, will also continue at that publishing pace.

A spokesman for Condé Nast declined to comment on the frequency changes, budget cuts or layoffs.

According to sources, GQ, Glamour, Allure and Architectural Digest will go from 12 issues to 11; Bon Appétit will go from 11 issues to 10, and W and Condé Nast Traveler will now have eight issues, down from 10. Teen Vogue, which had published five issues a year, will close its print edition.

Teen Vogue’s buzzy editor in chief Elaine Welteroth may remain working on the title in some capacity and will likely find an additional role at the company, an insider noted. No word yet on what that role might be. Since the presidential election, Teen Vogue has emerged as a critical voice for Gen-Z and Millennials to rail against the Trump administration, as well as a platform to highlight diversity issues. While the digital report has been largely run by Phillip Picardi, who also oversees Allure’s web site, Welteroth has become the face of Teen Vogue. Sources have surmised that Welteroth could grab a job as editor in chief of Glamour or editor in chief of Allure (and its current editor, Michelle Lee, be moved to Glamour). Another perhaps more plausible scenario is that Welteroth grows a new brand at Condé Nast, as Picardi has with Them, a site focusing on LGBTQ issues.

This latest round of cuts follows a turbulent year at Condé Nast. The year began with a reorganization that upended the publisher’s business and editorial teams after it let go of about 100 employees. On the edit side, creative, copy and research teams were combined across the company’s portfolio, which many have said has been a bumpy transition. Jim Norton, a former AOL executive, was ushered in to oversee the firm’s business-side reorganization, comprised of grouping titles under chief business officers and creating a new position of chief industry officer, who would sell across categories.

Norton’s vision — and behavior — ruffled feathers at the company, and he was soon ousted and replaced by Pamela Drucker Mann. In the meantime, the company has continued to evolve Norton’s plan, which has included laying off executives Lisa Hughes of The New Yorker, and Giulio Capua, a former AD publisher. As Condé has looked to reduce headcount and thin out heavy-salaried employees, editors in chief Keija Minor, of Brides; Graydon Carter, of Vanity Fair, and Cindi Leive, of Glamour, have all exited the company. Condé is still on the hunt for successors at Vanity Fair and Glamour, which will likely be revealed around the Thanksgiving holiday.

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