MPA Cancels AMC Conference

Citing the challenging economic climate, Magazine Publishers of America will cancel its annual confab, the American Magazine Conference, scheduled to take place in Boca Raton, Fla., in October.

The magazine industry’s lobbying organization will replace the AMC with an event in New York focused on innovation. The date for that event has not been set.

The announcement to cancel the ’09 event came shortly after Hachette Filipacchi Media pulled out of MPA, along with American Media Inc. and New York magazine, as the industry faces a punishing advertising recession.

But MPA insisted the decision to cancel the AMC was unrelated to those companies’ moves.

“This is just in response to the difficult economic climate,” a rep for MPA said. “Members are going to be reluctant to get in planes, and we didn’t feel that having a big, festive conference was aligned with the mood of the times.”

MPA has also reduced members’ dues by 13 percent effective with 2009, recognizing its members’ need to reduce costs. The industry’s economy woes have also trickled down to the organization: Last year, MPA cut its staff by 20 percent and reduced its operating budget by 18 percent.

Nina Link, president and CEO, MPA, issued a statement, saying, “We recognize that this year our members are looking at a variety of ways to achieve savings, which would include curtailing certain discretionary travel and hotel expenses. We hope to resume the AMC next year in the city of Chicago.”

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