'Vanity Fair' Fires Publisher

As Ad Pages Drop, Alan Katz Is Out; Edward Menicheschi Named Successor

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- After months of speculation and denials, Conde Nast Publications has pulled the trigger and fired Alan Katz from his post as VP-publisher at Vanity Fair, where ad pages are down 14.7% so far this year. Mr. Katz's departure is effectively immediately.
Edward Menicheschi has been named to replace the departing Alan Katz as VP-publisher.
Edward Menicheschi has been named to replace the departing Alan Katz as VP-publisher.

WWD Media
Charles H. Townsend, Conde Nast's president-CEO, named Edward Menicheschi to succeed Mr. Katz; Mr. Menicheschi had been president, WWD Media Worldwide, part of Conde Nast. A search for a successor at WWD is under way.

Mr. Townsend told Advertising Age in May that contrary to rumors, no Conde Nast publishers should be concerned about their jobs. "I plan no changes, see no need for changes and am very content with the position that we're in," he said then.

Today Mr. Townsend said Mr. Katz was an excellent publisher but had been assigned to a magazine out of his normal realm. "Alan is in my book a top, top publisher with extraordinary strengths and influences but not necessarily in the communities that I think are critically important to Vanity Fair," he said in an interview. "His familiarity with those communities didn't come as easily as we hoped they would. Honest to Pete I take full responsibility for putting him in that position."

Less than a year
Mr. Townsend also said he had stayed the course with Mr. Katz, who had been publisher just since last September, longer than most people would have. Mr. Katz was previously publisher at Conde Nast's Cargo magazine, now closed, and at New York magazine.

Other publishers at Conde books with troubling ad-sales trends this year, Jane and The New Yorker among them, are safe, Mr. Townsend said today.
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