Are Media

Helen McCabe is leaving the Australian Women’s Weekly after editing the magazine for six years.

McCabe says of her decision:

“Thank you to publisher Matt Dominello, Bauer Media and CEO Yvonne Bauer. Editing The Australian Women’s Weekly is one of the truly great honours in Australian publishing. But after six and a half years it is the right time to move. Thank you to the readers and to all the people who have trusted me to help tell their stories. And finally thank you to the talented AWW team. You are the best.”

110 posts were split to a new topic: TV Week

Just revealed that iconic magazine Cleo will close

Cleo closes after 44 years

THE closure of iconic magazine CLEO is imminent, ending a 44-year chapter in Australia’s media history.

not according to this on B&T:

Reports online of an impending closure of Cleo magazine have been squashed by a Bauer spokesperson who spoke to B&T.

The spokesperson said the “digital and print run completely separate from one another” and there was “no announcement being made today” nor was anything expected to be announced regarding closure in the future.

“It is complete speculation at this point and we’ll be making no announcement to staff today or in the future,” he said.

It would be sad if another iconic brand bit the dust. It surprises me that they don’t try to adapt to the new world of the internet rather than just shutting all these long-standing brands completely down.

It’s now “official” that Cleo will be closing

Publisher Bauer finally confirms Cleo Magazine’s closure in an internal announcement

Part of the story:

At 9.50am a verbal announcement was made by management at the German telling staff the magazine was closing, five days after The Daily Telegraph broke the news of CLEO’s demise.

The announcement was followed by an official press release.

“As you may be aware, we have made the decision to close CLEO magazine in Australia,” the statement reads. “It is never an easy decision to close a magazine and we have certainly considered the options before coming to this conclusion, however in its current format, SLEO was no longer sustainable for the longer term.”

The statement also confirmed The Daily telegraph’s story that Dolly magazine would close and remain solely in its online format.

It seems really odd to me how Bauer Media bought into publishing in Australia but all they do is shut magazines down. How are they making any money from this investment?

The market has changed since Bauer purchased the ACP magazines group. There were a lot of magazines that sort of aimed for the same market - like Cleo and Cosmo, Ralph, Zoo and FHM, etc…

Surprised it hasn’t been done earlier.

Former editor Sharri Markson was interviewed on The Project and she mentioned the Bachelor of the Year competition is a valuable feature and will continue in Cosmopolitan. Makes me wonder why they didn’t ‘merge’ the titles rather than just shut down Cleo.

magazine mergers are certainly nothing new. Woman’s Day in the early 1980s absorbed former magazine Woman’s World, and TV Week of course became an amalgamation of TV Week, TV Times and TV Guide. Not sure why they couldn’t have amalgamated Cleo into Cosmo and essentially keep the best of both titles.

Exactly. And by merging you have chance of bringing those Cleo readers over to Cosmo. Now they could go anywhere else or could be lost from magazines forever.

I think they might see the value in holding onto the Cleo branding as part of their corporate back catalogue until such time as they can revive it in a different form. Mixing it in with Cosmo might not be appropriate if that’s the plan. Of course, they can always steal bits from Cleo and incorporate that into Cosmo.

When ACP brought all the Emap titles, I was surprised that a lot of the titles weren’t merged then. Like Ralph and FHM - that could’ve been merged until the FHM title.

Disgruntled former CLEO staffers reveal working at the magazine in its last year was ‘hell’
The Daily Telegraph

This is a familiar story regarding mismanagement of an Australian company/business from overseas management who have no idea. I know of at least two other companies who have been in similar turmoil in recent years, following foreign management stepping into companies where they do not understand the Australian landscape or people. The results in those cases have been that the companies are in worse shape and have lost market share.

“The team was so mismanaged, directionless and all teams had massive infighting,” one source claimed. “(They) were constantly aggro and everyone was depressed. It was such an insecure atmosphere, everyone was just so scared about losing their jobs.”

More gossip surrounding Bauer Media in the Sydney Morning Herald’s Private Sydney.

Bauer magazine empire loses more gloss

It was once referred to as Sydney’s Tower of Power when the late Kerry Packer walked the corridors of 54 Park Street, corralling his legions of glamazons and producing some of the finest, most ground-breaking and profitable women’s magazines in the world.

But this week insiders at the once great magazine empire were describing a scene straight out of The Hunger Games. As one senior writer noted: “there are people sobbing in their cubicles, it’s appalling”.

In 2012 Germany’s Bauer Media paid a whopping $525 million to James Packer to buy out the family’s publishing empire, a sale which would see iconic mastheads such as Australian Women’s Weekly, Woman’s Day, Australian Gourmet Traveller, Cleo and Belle, all titles pioneered by Australians for Australians, fall into foreign hands under the leadership of billionaire Bauer heiress, Yvonne Bauer.

Rivals now estimate the Australian business could be worth around a quarter of what family-owned Bauer paid, while constant upheaval in senior management ranks and controversial moves, such as sourcing articles from German magazines and translating them into English before “dumping” them into Australian titles, has further eroded the publishing house’s reputation with both advertisers and readers.

In the years that followed Bauer’s buyout at Park Street, the German company which proudly espouses the credo “We Think Popular”, began a campaign of shutting down magazines, with the likes of Madison, Women’s Fitness, Grazia, Zoo Weekly, Bourke’s Backyard, BBC Good Food and martial arts title UFC all being killed off.

On Wednesday the worst kept secret in Australian media was confirmed when Cleo magazine was unceremoniously axed after 44 years, resulting in yet more job losses and further damaging the Bauer Media brand in Australia, which just days before said rumours Cleo was folding were “pure speculation”.

Bauer also announced this week that sister magazine Dolly had effectively been shrunk by half as it focuses on the digital world rather than magazines, further alienating the masthead from the millions of women who grew up reading it, while rumours persist its two biggest money earners, Woman’s Day and the Australian Women’s Weekly, will soon be merged, with one editor overseeing both titles and yet more job losses.

Last week AWW editor-in-chief Helen McCabe announced she was leaving the magazine after six-and-a-half years at the helm and with apparently no job to go. She was put on six months’ “gardening leave” within days of the news coming out, while insiders told PS it was precipitated by “yet another meeting with management in which she found herself banging her head against the same walls she has been banging her head up against ever since Bauer first took over.”

PS’s repeated calls to various management remain unanswered, including interim CEO Andreas Schoo, a former lawyer who is one of Yvonne Bauer’s right-hand men in Hamburg who was dispatched to Sydney following previous CEO David Goodchild’s sudden departure last December after just one year in the job. Goodchild followed Matthew Stanton, who quit Bauer after six years, a move which prompted Yvonne Bauer to issue a note to staff admitting it had been a “tumultuous few years” for the Australian operation.
“What an understatement,” one of Bauer’s Australian editors told PS at the time.

Private Sydney

Josephine Rozenberg-Clarke has been named the new editor of Dolly, which becomes a bi-monthly from the May 2016 issue (on sale in April). She is currently features editor of Dolly and Cleo. Lucy Cousins, current editor of the two magazines, finishes next week.

With Cleo gone, is this the next women’s mag in line for the chopping block?
Shop Til You Drop is tipped to be on the way out.

The Sunday Telegraph

The Australian Women’s Weekly has a new editor-in-chief - Kim Wilson former New Idea editor-in-chief and currently editing for NewsLifeMedia was named today.

What I’ve been saying for ages.

What does Bauer Media need to do to become a real force again?
With Bauer Media closing titles and struggling to find relevance in the digital landscape, Mumbrella’s Miranda Ward looks at how things got to this point, and what a new CEO needs to do to fix the company’s fortunes.

Australia’s largest magazine publisher, Bauer Media, will look back at 2015 as something of an annus horribilis. In the past 12 months it lost a CEO, the editor of its most high-profile publication, its sales director, and closed three major masthead magazines, while its digital strategy failed to get off the ground.

The company’s issues boil down to three core problems – bad management, no coherent digital strategy and no real budget for content.


Bauer is going to lose another senior executive, with Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Bronwyn McCahon leaving this April after 16 years with the company.

You’re witnessing a company in crisis.