HACHETTE’S NEW PLATFORM PROGRAM
Byline: Janet Ozzard
NEW YORK — Imagine tuning into Elle TV, or getting content from Premiere delivered via wireless technology to a Palm Pilot. Those kinds of programs will be the focus of Lagardere Active, the new multimedia development division of Lagardere SCA, the parent company of Hachette Filipacchi Magazines (HFM).
Jack Kliger, chief executive officer of HFM, has been named chairman of Lagardere Active North America, the new division’s operating unit here, and Benjamin K. Tatta is its chief operating officer. Tatta had been senior vice president of USA Networks’ interactive division.
“Now we have the ability, for example, to take content from magazines that before didn’t have a very long shelf life and put it into new media,” said Kliger Thursday afternoon. And given the endless possibilities of cable TV, that creates enormous opportunity for existing media that already has an identity and point of view, he said.
“The goal of this new venture is to take the advantages and strengths of the Hachette brands and move them to new platforms,” said Tatta. There are also Lagardere Active operating units in Europe and Asia.
However, both executives said that while there will be new ventures within the various titles, there’s little likelihood of crossovers; in other words, don’t expect Elle Decor to produce a TV show with Car and Driver, another Hachette title.
In a statement, Arnaud Lagardere, general partner and co-chief executive officer of Lagardere SCA, said: “By separating these initiatives under an independent Lagardere division, we will be able to focus the company’s considerable global resources and expertise to this important growth area. As one of the world’s largest and most innovative multimedia conglomerates, Lagardere plans to continue to grow through innovative internal expansion, as well as through acquisitions and strategic partnerships.”