‘Glamour’ Publisher Out

Change comes as key title faces soft numbers

Two months into his job as Glamour publisher, Jason Wagenheim is leaving after sources said his management style clashed with that of Bill Wackermann, the executive vice president who's known for his hands-on approach.

Wackermann will return to overseeing Glamour on a day-to-day basis. But Wagenheim (who is expected to stay at Condé Nast, but in a different position) isn’t the only ad-side departure from Glamour. Another exec, Bobby Graham, just jumped to sibling title Lucky, where he started Tuesday as ad director.

Meanwhile, Wagenheim’s short-lived stint has people talking about larger issues facing Glamour.

The title that’s known as Condé Nast’s biggest cash cow has had had a run of bad numbers this year—its first-half newsstand sales were down 17.5 percent to 453,707, though that's still more than most of its key competitors. (Marie Claire was down 21.5 percent, but its newsstand volume is less than half Glamour’s.)

While Glamour touted its September issue as its biggest moneymaker of any issue, its ad pages declined 2.5 percent for the January-to-September period, per Publishers Information Bureau. Others in the set have fared better: Vogue was up 7.9 percent over the same timeframe; Elle, 6.1 percent; and InStyle, 0.9 percent.

Sources close to Glamour said it’s working on making some tweaks to the magazine, which is a typical magazine response to soft numbers. One person said magazine representatives have stayed away from the term "redesign," though.

Ad buyers said these are difficult times for mass magazines in general.

“Some advertisers are looking for more vertical platforms, which can be a challenge for mass reach titles,” said Dennis Santos, vice president and group media director at PGR Media.

Adweek reported earlier this year on the search for a Glamour publisher. Wagenheim was a Condé Nast vet who came over from the same position at Time Inc.'s Entertainment Weekly.

He was the second EW publisher in a row to leave for a job that didn't end up lasting. His predecessor, Ray Chelstowski, went to Newsweek to help shepherd its merger with The Daily Beast early this year; he was let go earlier this month.

Wagenheim and Wackermann didn't return calls seeking comment.