Rumored 'Lucky' Magazine Closure Puts Condé Nast on the Defensive
Another doomsday rumor regarding shopping magazine Lucky is making the rounds. Condé Nast execs are once again publicly denying the instability of the magazine and privately reassuring Lucky staffers in the wake of this new wave of speculation.
Page Six started up the rumor mill late Wednesday evening with a post hinting at a final shuttering of the 13-year-old publication. “Talk in media circles is that Condé Nast will finally shutter the struggling shopping title soon, and move Editor-in-Chief Eva Chen back to Teen Vogue.”
Though the article gave no specifics or sources — words like "talk" and "media circles" do not scream solid reporting — the late night post has put Condé Nast executives on the defensive, according to WWD. Memos from Editor In Chief Eva Chen, the magazine's publisher Gillian Gorman Round, and Condé Nast CEO Charles Townsend began circulating Thursday morning.
In her memo to staff, Chen applauded her team and the increased strength of the magazine, noting that sales of Lucky’s May issue were up 18.7 percent and that for February through May, the number of ad pages in the publication rose by 2 percent, outpacing the competition. She also noted that subscriptions are up 3 percent over December 2012 numbers.
"This is all due to YOUR amazing work and the visibility, passion and life you have all breathed into this magazine," she told the staff in her memo, in which she also shared her feelings on the rumored closing,
As a final flourish, she added a link to the song “Bad Boys for Life” by Sean “Puff Daddy” Combs.
Lucky has been in danger of closing since 2010 when founding editor-in-chief Kim France was ousted and Brandon Holley was hired to revitalize the faltering title. Three years later, Anna Wintour herself made Teen Vogue staffer and social media darling Eva Chen the new EIC and charged her with taking the magazine into the digital age.
To her credit, the magazine has seen a huge turn around under Chen’s leadership, but it may not be enough. In her memo Chen failed to mention the decline in ad sales over Fall/Winter 2013 and last year’s trimming of the title from 12 issues to 10 per year.
I’m in no way saying that Page Six has it right, but given the facts above, the story isn't implausible. We'll see if the rumors are confirmed or fade over the next few months, but in the meantime, enjoy a little blast from Lucky’s past.