Conde Nast to close four magazines, including Gourmet

New York : US magazine giant Conde Nast Publications Inc appears to have lost its appetite for battling the effects of the recession and the internet, announcing Monday that it was closing down four magazines, including the flagship foodie journal Gourmet, a mainstay of US food lovers since 1941.

Conde Nast said it would also shut three other magazines: the parenting magazine Cookie and the wedding publications Elegant Bride and Modern Bride. About 180 people are to lose their jobs as a result of the four closings, the company said.

In a staff memo, Conde Nast chief executive Charles Townsend said the closures were required “to navigate the company through the economic downturn”.

Conde Nast is one of the big three of US magazine publishers along with Time Warner and Hearst. Its other titles include The New Yorker, Vogue, Vanity Fair and Wired, and the company had been famous for the extravagant expense accounts it allowed its top editors and writers.

The closures, which are the largest ever at Conde Nast, come after a sharp two-year downturn in advertising, that has been exacerbated as readers move from print subscriptions to browsing on the internet.

According to industry analysts, the closures are part of a wider trend in which media companies, including Conde Nast, are cutting back on print publications while boosting their digital outlets.

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