Hachette Filipacchi Closes Metropolitan Home

Publisher to Focus Ad Sales Resources on Elle Decor

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Hachette Filipacchi closed Metropolitan Home today, adding the title to the list of shelter magazines buried by recession, the end of the housing bubble and the shifting media business. Publishers have already closed home titles such as Southern Accents, Domino, Country Home, Cottage Living and O at Home.

Hachette said it will continue to compete in the category, however, with new emphasis on the surviving Elle Décor. "It is with a feeling of sadness that I make the announcement to close one of our magazines," said Hachette President-CEO Alain Lemarchand in a statement today. "However, we believe the best strategy in the upscale shelter segment is to boldly focus our resources and investment on Elle Décor, which is the ad-page leader within the U.S. market."

Contracting ad budgets have made many marketers choose which magazines to keep advertising in and which were secondary or tertiary. Now publishers with more than one magazine in the same category are performing a similar calculus. Before Hachette doubled down on Elle Décor today, Conde Nast last month closed Gourmet and decided to focus its epicurean efforts on Gourmet's sibling Bon Appetit.

Thirteen editorial employees at Metropolitan Home, including editor in chief Donna Warner, will leave Hachette. Elle Décor will absorb the business staff at least for now, with any further restructuring to come later.

The first three quarters of this year saw ad pages fall 33% at Metropolitan Home and 34% at Elle Décor, according to the Publishers Information Bureau. Ad pages across all magazines tracked by the bureau, by comparison, fell 27%.

The December issue of Metropolitan Home, which guaranteed advertisers a paid circulation of 550,000 copies, will be its last. PointClickHome.com, a site combining content from Metropolitan Home and Elle Décor, will also cease operations.

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