Last Thursday, Condé Nast announced that it planned to reduce W magazine’s publishing frequency from twelve to ten issues annually. The publishing magnate told WWD that the move was part of “a strategic brand expansion,” and that it would “allow the brand to bolster its focus on key issues.”
The 10-issue standard is not new amongst fashion-geared publications. The US’s oldest fashion title, Harper’s Bazaar (owned by Hearst publications) received the same reduction in September 2011. In W’s case, the move was not solely based on advertising (WWD reports that the title’s ad pages jumped 10 percent in 2012), however that isn’t the case for the Condé’s newest victim. Wednesday afternoon, WWD’s media reporter Erik Maza tweeted that the publishing house’s struggling title, Lucky, is also axing two of its issues. “Condé finally makes a decision on Lucky Magazine: Like W, it’s scaling back from 12 to ten issues a year,” Maza dispatched on Twitter on Wednesday afternoon. (Update: see WWD's full story here.)
W’s news may have come as a surprise to media enthusiasts, especially considering its positive advertising ranks, but Lucky has long been said to be flailing in the market. Last year it was reported that the magazine might even move entirely online. Official details of the new configuration are yet to come through, but if they’re anything like W’s recent changes, Lucky will likely publish a December/January issue, followed by a similarly consolidated model for June/July, effectively merging the slowest-performing months on the publishing calendar. Two representatives for Lucky didn’t respond to e-mails asking for comment.