Meredith Corp., publisher of Better Homes and Gardens, Parents and other mass women’s titles, has joined a group of rival magazine companies that is working to form an independent company to sell e-reader versions of print magazines.
Time Inc., Condé Nast and Hearst are also said to be part of the coalition. The company is expected to be announced in the weeks ahead.
The new entity is meant to provide a way for publishers to sell versions of their titles for anticipated e-readers that are conducive to the visual magazine reading experience and their ads, with color, sound and video capabilities.
The effort grew out of publishing industry desires to prevent device makers from controlling e-reader user data and magazines’ ability to leverage that data with advertisers.
The New York Observer reported that Time Inc. executive vp John Squires, who has been spearheading the consortium’s development, will lead the new company. Time Inc. wouldn’t comment on Squires’ future role at the planned entity.