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Primary website:
condenast.com

Conde Nast is an international magazine publisher that specializes in lifestyle publications.

Conde Nast publishes many of the world’s leading fashion and lifestyle magazines, including Vogue, Glamour, Vanity Fair, and GQ. It also publishes The New Yorker and Wired and owns the tech blog Ars Technica and the link-sharing site Reddit. It launched a fashion school in London in 2013.

Owned since 1959 by the Newhouse family’s Advance Publications and chaired by S.I. “Si” Newhouse Jr., Conde Nast has been known for several decades as one of the United States’ more glamorous and free-spending publishing empires. Its profits typically have been low, though, because of its lavish spending and consistent investment in new titles.

Still, the company has made significant cuts and layoffs since 2008 as a result of declining advertising and profit. In 2009, it closed several magazines including Portfolio (whose website was kept alive by another Advance subsidiary), Domino, and Modern Bride.

It also closed the 68-year-old food magazine Gourmet, though in 2010 the magazine was reintroduced in an iPad version.

Since the early 2000s, Conde Nast’s advertising department has designed and developed advertising campaigns, similar to a full-fledged ad agency. It expanded into digital-only ads in 2010 and multimedia, social media and apps in 2011.

Conde Nast began its first websites in the mid-1990s. The company’s digital operations had long been run by CondeNet, which was turned into Conde Nast Digital in 2009 as all of its digital properties were merged into one unit. Until the late 2000s, the company placed relatively little emphasis on digital media: As of 2008, only about 3 percent of its ad revenue came from digital properties, among the lowest totals in the industry.

Conde Nast’s most visited websites are RedditWired, and Epicurious.

Conde Nast announced an advertising and content-sharing partnership with the video site Hulu in 2009. It announced a partnership with Amazon in 2013 that allowed Amazon to manage subscriptions for its top titles and package them to Amazon subscribers.

The company launched its first mobile products in 2005 and gave its publications individual mobile sites in 2008. GQ was the first magazine to launch an iPhone app with a full replica of the magazine. Conde Nast developed its own reader platform for the app. The company also plans to incorporate Twitter and Facebook into its iPhone apps.

Conde Nast was among the first publishers to announce plans for iPad editions of its publications, starting with versions of Wired, GQ, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, and Glamour. The Wired iPad app, at $4.95 an issue, quickly outsold the print edition in its early months, now averaging about a third of the print edition’s sales. In early 2011, Conde Nast raised the price on two of its tablet publications, GQ and Vanity Fair, to more closely align with newsstand pricing. In May 2011, it announced a new deal with Apple using its subscription model that would place several Conde Nast magazines in the App Store at $19.99 per year.

Conde Nast is also part of a consortium of magazine publishers, Next Issue Media, that released magazine subscriptions on Android-powered Samsung Galaxy tablets in May 2011 and a flat-rate subscription across magazines for the iPad in July 2012. Conde Nast was also one of the initial publishers to sign on with Amazon’s Kindle Fire.

Peers, allies, & competitors:
Recent Nieman Lab coverage:
June 13, 2013 / Ken Doctor
The newsonomics of Hearst Magazines’ one million new customers — Take this quiz. The era of paying for digital access (a.k.a. digital circulation or paywalls) is about: Getting more money out of core subscribers; Getting new money out of new subscribers; or Getting money any way you c...
May 2, 2013 / Joshua Benton
Add Vogue and Wired to the list of print brands with video channels — Can Des Moines Register TV be far behind? Lauren Indvik at Mashable: Conde Nast Entertainment is ramping up its digital video network, launching channels for Vogue and Wired later this month. New weekly shows, including ...
May 2, 2013 / Ken Doctor
The newsonomics of the mobile aggregator roundup — What are we to think when the aggregators start getting aggregated? That’s what’s happening in the mobile aggregation space. Put those two little words — mobile and aggregation — together, and you’v...
April 11, 2013 / Ken Doctor
The newsonomics of recycling journalism — There’s an important number in his week’s first-of-its-kind Newspaper Association of America report — The American Newspaper Media Industry Revenue Profile 2012 — on the evolution of revenue sources. That...
March 28, 2013 / Caroline O'Donovan
At The Wall Street Journal, a smartphone app has reporters on board for shooting video — The text-based web is dead, says Michael Downing. When AOL CEO Tim Armstrong announced his intention this month to transform the company into a platform for video, Downing heard a death knell — one he’s been expectin...

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Primary author: Mark Coddington. Main text last updated: October 2, 2013.
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