Former 'WSJ.Magazine' Publisher Bahrenburg To Lead 'Robb Report' Luxury Sales

Penske Media Corp. named Luke Bahrenburg as executive vice president-Chief Revenue Officer, Robb Report. He also is head of luxury sales at the publisher's art media titles, including ARTnews and Art in America.

Bahrenberg will report to Thomas Finn, executive vice president-GM operations, based in New York. Bahrenberg is joining the company as it reorganizes advertising sales for luxury brands within one group. PMC also publishes Variety, Rolling Stone, The Hollywood Reporter and WWD, among other titles.

Bahrenburg previously was publisher of WSJ. magazine, the fashion and luxury insert of the weekend edition of The Wall Street Journal. He started the job in September; his predecessor Anthony Cenname left after 10 years to join L'Officiel as global CRO.

In October, WSJ. announced plans to reduce its print frequency from 12 issues to eight in 2021 and focus on digital content, including virtual events, WWD reported. The WSJ last year surpassed more than 2 million digital subscribers, according to Dow Jones & Co.'s parent company News Corp.

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Luxury products have shown some signs of recovering from pandemic lockdowns that dampened travel to shopping meccas like New York and Paris. LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE, a bellwether for the luxury market, reported that fashion and leather sales rose 12% from a year earlier in the third quarter. That gain wasn't enough to offset declines in fragrances, cosmetics, watches, jewelry, wines and spirits as total revenue fell 7% for the period.

However, demand for luxury goods is set to rebound in the U.S. as soon as the pandemic subsides. Household savings have risen by more than $1 trillion since the pre-pandemic period because higher-income households have had fewer opportunities to splurge.

“We are on the verge of a luxury products boom," Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at consulting firm RSM US Llp., said in an interview. "There is ample pent-up demand for luxury goods.”

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