Tag Archives: Southern Living

Southern Progress: 41.4 percent staff reduction in 11 months

southern-progress-graphic

Summer was a brutal season for Southern Progress.

After laying off 200 of its 700 employees during the fourth quarter of 2008 — a 28.6 percent cut — the Birmingham-based Time Inc. operation / magazine publisher shed 90 positions total this summer.

Southern Progress sold Southern Living at Home to Entertaining at Home in July, lightening the load by 70 employees (of whom 29 promptly were let go by the new owner earlier this month).

It also ceased publication on Southern Accents magazine, letting 20 staffers go.

With 90 positions cut from the 500 remaining, Southern Progress has tightened up staff by another 18 percent in the last 60 days, or 41.4 percent in the past 11 months.

So, at Southern Progress in the past 11 months:

  • 290 positions eliminated
  • 41.4 percent staff reduction
  • 2 magazines folded
  • 1 operation sold

The one bright spot: Southern Living’s circulation increased 1.35 percent in the first half of 2009, making it No. 19 among U.S. magazines (and No. 4 among Time Inc. titles). (Of course, Reader’s Digest declaring bankruptcy makes it actually No. 18 across the nation.)

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EXCLUSIVE: Magazine ad sales: Southern Progress loses 16.9 percent

Southern Progress magazine 2009 ad sales

Magazine ad sales for saw declines for all five Southern Progress titles comparing the first halves of 2008 and 2009, according to figures from the Magazine Publishers of America. The Birmingham-based titles — Coastal Living, Cooking Light, Health, Southern Accents and Southern Living — all saw drops in ad revenue from 8 percent (Health) to 32.1 percent (Southern Accents).

First quarter comparisons weren’t nearly as dire for Cooking Light and Southern Living, but Southern Accents’ ad sales performance has weakened in the second quarter. Southern Progress magazines lost 16.9 percent in ad revenues, earning $209 million so far in 2009.

Meanwhile, another Birmingham-based magazine, Hoffman Media’s Cooking With Paula Deen, had a 3.2 percent increase in ad sales comparing the first halves of 2008 and 2009.

U.S. magazines lost 21 percent in ad sales overall during the first half of 2009.

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EXCLUSIVE: Southern Living lays off editorial staffers

Southern LivingMedia of Birmingham has learned that Birmingham-based Southern Living has laid off five to seven staff members today on the editorial side of the magazine, including employees in the food, travel, home, art and photo departments. The cuts leave about 85 staff members in place in editorial.

The magazine lost 26.9 percent in ad sales comparing the first quarter of 2008 and 2009.

Southern Progress Corporation, which publishes Southern Living, shed 200 people in the last quarter of 2008, reducing its staff in Birmingham to 500 employees. It also closed Cottage Living magazine.

Unlike the previous rounds, we’ve heard that supervisors informed laid-off employees to pack and leave the building by 5 p.m. today, rather than the two to four weeks transition time given to eliminated employees. No word on whether they were offered severance packages.

Earlier this week, the Birmingham News reduced salaries and cut part-time positions.

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Update 6/9/09: After laying off a Homes staffer on Friday, Southern Living posted an opening for an assistant homes editor just four days later (June 9): [It appears the job listing was taken down shortly after discovery by magazine employees.]

Job Title
Assistant Homes Editor – Southern Living

TimeWarner Division
Time Inc.

Industry
Publishing

Location
United States – Alabama – Birmingham

Requisition #
112776BR

Position Type
Full Time

Posting Job Description

Southern Living is seeking an assistant editor to help produce stories and write for the Homes section.

Duties: Emphasis on writing and packaging our monthly homes line-up with a fresh voice that reaches out to a younger reader. Will also coordinate photography with photographers and stylists. Attend monthly story conferences, previews, and issue reviews. Develop a strong network of homes and/or garden contacts around the South. Stay abreast of homes topics and trends.

Requirements: 3-5 years experience at a lifestyle title or equivalent with top-notch writing, editing, and design skills. Ideal candidates will possess a four-year degree in English, Art, design or other related field. Hands-on experience in interior design or architecture a plus. Should have strong organizational skills. High energy, flexibility, and an ability to work as part of a creative team a must.

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Update 7/8/09: The ad returns a month later. The wording is exactly the same, except for the title, assistant/associate homes editor (instead of associate homes editor). Looks like the magazine is bargain hunting …

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Magazine ad sales: Southern Progress slumps, Hoffman gains

cooking with paula deen cover

Magazines at Birmingham-based Southern Progress Corporation saw big drops in ad sales comparing the first quarter of 2008 and 2009:

  • -28.9 percent: Southern Accents
  • -26.9 percent: Southern Living
  • -11.4 percent: Cooking Light

But Hoffman Media saw an increase in ad sales during the same quarter for one magazine:

  • +14.7 percent: Cooking With Paula Deen

U.S. magazines lost 20.6 percent in ad sales overall during the first quarter.

30 laid off at Southern Progress; top executives retire

Time Inc. Layoffs Hit Southern Progress Unit

The cuts that have been rumored for weeks at Time Inc. are starting to become reality. About 30 people were laid off Oct. 22 at the company’s Southern Progress Corp. unit, which publishes seven titles including Southern Living, Cottage Living, Cooking Light and Health.

The layoffs, representing 3 percent of SPC, were limited to the unit’s seven print magazines and were spread across business and editorial. Southern Progress’ digital and books units were not affected.

Time Inc. says Southern Progress CEO Angelillo, other execs have retired

Southern Progress Corp. Chief Executive Tom Angelillo and three other top executives have retired today, according to parent company Time Inc.

Other retirees are group publisher Scott Sheppard, editorial director Jeanetta Corbett Keller and administrative vice president Lane Schmitt.

New York-based Time announced no replacements.