Mag Bag: E-Commerce Arrives At 'Departures'


E-Commerce Arrives At Departures

Departures, the high-end lifestyle magazine from American Express Publishing, is jumping into the e-commerce arena with its new "eExclusives" campaign, which lets readers buy products from big retail and brand advertisers like Saks Fifth Avenue, Akris and Brunello Cucinelli.

Published seven times a year for AmEx Platinum Card and Centurion members, Departures is taking a rather different tack to e-commerce from most other publishers, which generally have offered readers discounts on popular products through partnerships and acquisitions with sites and services like, StyleFeeder, ShopStyle and Pixazza.

Departures' eExclusives, by contrast, is playing up the premium, exclusive nature of the publication and its advertisers by making luxury items available for only a limited time and at full price. One must hold one of the above-mentioned AmEx cards to even access the e-commerce site.



The products offered through eExclusives are indeed a cut above even the high-end strappy shoes available on other e-commerce platforms. According to Adweek, some of the first products to be offered via eExclusives include a "his-and-hers $1,990 handbag" and "a $1,645 iPad case made of horsehair from Akris." What's the appeal of a horsehair iPad case? Well, if you have to ask, you'll probably never know, dahling.

While discount offers might be the right way to lure most consumers into e-commerce transactions during a recession, the Departures' approach makes sense for its well-heeled readers, who enjoy an average annual income of $476,000 and a total net worth, including principal residence, of $2.8 million. In short, these folks may have heard about the recession, but probably aren't feeling it too much.

Maxim Moves Digital Edition to Mag+

Mag+, the new digital magazine app platform created by Moving Media (the digital publishing company launched by Bonnier earlier this year), has attracted its first major non-Bonnier client. Maxim, the iconic laddie, young men's lifestyle magazine, has switched its digital app back-end support from Bite Sized Candy to Mag+, beginning with the re-launch of its iPad app this week. (Erroneous reports suggested the Maxim iPad app was gone for good.)

Although most of Mag+'s non-Bonnier magazine clients are still smaller European publications, it has snagged some big catalogue clients, including Ikea. Within the Bonnier fold, Mag+ has created apps for Popular Science and Popular Photography. Bonnier has also launched a new division, Boom Publishing, to create new digital publications independent of exiting print titles.

New York Observer Launches Scooter

Anyone trying to raise kids in New York City deserves a medal, but for now they will have to settle for a magazine: New York Observer Scooter, a new title from The Observer Media Group targeting New York City parents, which is set to debut August 31, with a biannual publication schedule. The magazine will be edited by Peter Feld, who previously served as online editor for Cookie, the Conde Nast parenting publication which folded in October 2009.

Chicago Home + Garden Unveils Interior Design Book

Chicago Home + Garden and Agate Surrey have unveiled a new book for design enthusiasts who want to embrace the Windy City's unique style, titled Chicago Spaces: Inspiring Interiors. Featuring rooms "modern and traditional, minimalist and ornate, pristine and quirky," editor Jan Parr says the book "puts to rest once and for all the notion that Chicago's design sensibility is predictably conservative and safe." The first half features homes in their entirety, while the second focuses on specific rooms, including dining, living, bedrooms, kitchens, baths, dens, foyers and children's rooms.

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