The Week

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`Us' goes daily for Fashion Week

Us weekly, Wenner Media's celeb-obsessed title, publishes this week a daily edition for New York City's Fashion Week. Us Fashion Week Daily will appear on Sept. 18, 19 and 21. Printed on glossy color stock, Us editor-in-chief Bonnie Fuller said it will resemble a "mini-broadsheet" but fold open much like a magazine. Around 10,000 copies will be handed out outside of key Fashion Week locations. The title was "inspired" by the magazine's front-of-the-book "Faces and Places" photo feature, Ms. Fuller said. Ms. Fuller dismissed notions of competing with Fairchild Publications' Women's Wear Daily. "It's not doing the primary job of Women's Wear which is to review and report on the collections," she said. "This is more reporting on Fashion Week as an event." Vicci Lasdon Rose, Us Weekly publisher, declined to name specific advertisers but said one liquor advertiser and one fashion advertiser were "on board," and others had expressed interest. QwikFIND aan96t

K-mart launches `La Vida,' circular

Kmart Corp. joins the ranks of retailers making a major push for Hispanic consumers with the publication of a lifestyle and entertainment magazine. LaVida, set for distribution in 10 cities nationwide with large Hispanic populations ranging from Nogales, Ariz., to Chicago, will be distributed along with a recently announced Spanish-language circular. Numerous other retailers have stepped up their Hispanic marketing efforts in recent years. Sears, Roebuck & Co. distributes its Nuestra Gente to 800,000; Wal-Mart Stores has an extensive Hispanic broadcast buy, and Kohl's recently indicated an increased Hispanic focus by hiring the Vidal Partnership, New York. QwikFIND aan96e

Grapefruit: Smell the refreshment

The florida Dept. of Citrus emulates the cosmetics industry in a first-time campaign for grapefruit juice featuring scent strips. Michelle Chandler, the Dept. of Citrus executive deputy director of global marketing and public relations and a former Procter & Gamble Co. cosmetics executive, helped develop the unusual tactic as a way to stem double-digit declines for grapefruit juice. "Grapefruit has started popping up in a lot of beauty products ... [and] a light bulb went off: If scent strips are successful with beauty-care products and fragrances, why not beverages?" Ms. Chandler said. The new print ads-from the Richards Group, Dallas, and backed by a small budget of $2.2 million-will run in lifestyle magazines such as Time Inc.'s People, In Style and Real Simple. The grapefruit juice category dropped nearly 10% to $198 million in sales over the past 52 weeks, according to Dept. of Citrus data. QwikFIND aan97c

Consumers seek bargains, comfort

Growth in spending on package-goods products has returned to normal post Sept. 11. But the new normal appears to mean more bargain hunting and eating at home, according to a report from Information Resources Inc. IRI's study, based on store and consumer panel data, found more than one third of consumers say they're staying at home more, fueling 7.5% growth in sales of prepared dinner products in the first half of 2002. Value-conscious consumers drove 13.6% sales growth for Wal-Mart, accounting for half of all package-goods sales growth in the first half. Non-food categories hit hardest following Sept. 11 have rebounded, with 4.7% growth in beauty and personal care products and 5.4% growth in pet care. QwikFIND aan96o

MediaPort closes doors after a year

Media port, the New York-based media management company created by Interpublic Group of Cos., Omnicom Group and WPP Group, closed its doors for good last week. MediaPort's President-CEO Michael Lotito, formerly president-chief operating officer of Interpublic's Initiative Media, and Chief Financial Officer Neil Schaffer were let go. MediaPort's ambitious mission was to develop a standardized, Internet-based media management system to process billing and invoicing between buyers and sellers. The company did develop transmission standards for such a system, which were "turned over to the [Association of American Advertising Agencies] and the [Association of National Advertisers] without charge," according to a MediaPort statement, but it did not create the system itself. The cost to produce a system that would rival industry leader Donovan Data Systems was considered too rich for the holding companies, said executives close to the companies. The holding trio's new tactic: If you can't beat them, buy them. According to executives, Interpublic, Omnicom and WPP are now negotiating to acquire Donovan. A spokesman at Donovan refused to comment, as did Mr. Lotito. QwikFIND aan96d


C vs corp. in early October will launch its first significant nationwide campaign via Interpublic's Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos, Boston, which won the $35 million media account last week. The Rhode Island-based pharmacy chain has an East Coast stronghold but wants to expand west of Chicago. ... The California Lottery Commission extended its contract with incumbent Grey Global Group's Grey Worldwide, Los Angeles, pending a decision from its legal office on its disputed five-year, $250 million general advertising contract. QwikFIND aan96r ... Kimberly-Clark Corp. named Chief Operating Officer Thomas J. Falk as CEO, and he is expected to be elected chairman by the company's board in February. Current CEO Wayne R. Sanders relinquished his CEO title last week and will retire as chairman in February. QwikFIND aan96u

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