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Condé Nast Changes Begin at Brides

Moves are just the start of what is expected to be a series of shake-ups in the coming days at the publisher.

CONDE CHANGES: Condé Nast has let go of longtime Brides editor in chief Millie Martini Bratten and replaced her with Marie Claire executive editor Anne Fulenwider. In another move, Michelle Myers is leaving as publisher of Lucky to become the new publisher of Brides, sources said.

These moves are just the start of what is expected to be a series of shake-ups in the coming days at the publisher. WWD has learned that Condé Nast plans to fold the Brides Local magazines, which are published in 16 different regions. Brides Local magazines and brides.com editor in chief Julie Raimondi resigned this week in order to take a job at a start-up, Lover.ly.

The question now is what happens to outgoing Brides publisher Carolyn Kremins. She is popular among executives at Condé Nast, and it’s expected that she’ll get a bigger book in her next assignment. There are several possibilities of where she could wind up, but two sources said Condé Nast Traveler is her most likely destination. One insider also said that GQ associate publisher Marcy Bloom is a front-runner to succeed Myers as publisher of Lucky. Obviously any move that involves Kremins involves a domino effect for other publishers in the company, and these moves are expected to take place Friday or early next week.

Condé Nast spokeswomen did not respond to e-mails and phone calls seeking comment.

The Brides news follows an all-hands-on-deck, two-hour Thursday morning meeting with all Condé Nast editors and publishers in the executive dining room on the fourth floor at 4 Times Square. Sources said that it was the first time all publishers and editors sat down together for such a meeting, and that it was similar in style to Condé Nast’s annual publishers meeting in Florida. Anna Wintour skipped a 10 a.m. Ralph Lauren show in order to stay for the entire meeting, and attended Lauren’s 11 a.m. show.

Chief executive officer Chuck Townsend and president Bob Sauerberg stressed the importance of beefing up revenue and widening profit margins, according to several people at the meeting. The two executives said the top priority for publishers and editors should be to return print magazines’ profit margins to prerecession, 2007 levels. Townsend emphasized that editors should be more experimental with their Web sites in order to increase revenue. Wired, Vanity Fair, Glamour and The New Yorker were credited with having decent profit margins for their Web sites.

Next, there was an emphasis on finding revenue elsewhere, such as with e-commerce, iPad apps and mobile businesses. Corporate leaders also said they want to do more with video and that the company will hire someone to help on that front, potentially to develop TV shows based on Condé Nast’s brands.

Back to the changes: Fulenwider’s departure is the second masthead defection from Marie Claire in a week. Abigail Pesta, longtime editor at large for the monthly, is heading to Newsweek and The Daily Beast, where she’ll serve as editorial director, women in the world. On Tuesday, Tina Brown unveiled the launch of the Women in the World Foundation, an offshoot of her annual three-day summits that have drawn Hillary Clinton, Madeleine Albright and Condoleezza Rice, among others. In her new role, Pesta will focus on telling more stories about organizations and causes involving women and girls.

A Marie Claire spokeswoman said a successor for Fulenwider would be named shortly.

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