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THE SEARCH GOES ON, AND ON, AND ON: It’s been a while now since Carol Smith jumped from Elle and fashion to food and Condé Nast and, still, there is no news of who will succeed her at her former gig and who will step into the secondary position of publisher of Elle. The Howard-Sloan-Koller Group has been retained for the search, and they are apparently going outside the publishing world to try and find a new chief brand officer that can expand the magazine’s reach and find Elle’s next “Project Runway,” as well as take it into other product categories beyond publishing. Trouble is, those that have talked to Elle so far say there are a few crucial sticking points to contend with: namely, Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S. chief executive officer Alain Lemarchand, who’s been described as functioning more as a chief financial officer and who, insiders say, is still not well versed in the American magazine publishing business, even after moving to the U.S. from Paris about 18 months ago to become U.S. ceo.
Meanwhile, in addition to Anne Janas, who recently said she would leave her role as senior vice president, corporate communications at Hachette, the company is also losing Thomas Masterson, senior vice president, consumer marketing and manufacturing. As Elle continues to search for some new blood, longtime Elle veteran and vice president, brand publisher Anne Welch continues to serve as acting chief brand officer. — Amy Wicks