MEDIA: Marie Claire strengthens team following takeover

Marie Claire, the 400,500-selling women's monthly, has made two senior appointments to beef up features coverage.

They follow last week's £1.1bn takeover of the magazine's parent company, IPC Media, by US media giant AOL Time Warner, and mark the end of editor Marie O'

Riordan's raft of staff changes since her sudden arrival from Emap four months ago (PRWeek, 11 May).

Vanessa Thompson becomes deputy editor of the title this week. She was formerly editor of Minx and senior commissioning editor at Elle.

'Her main emphasis will be on features for the first year - it's her strength,' O'Riordan said. Thompson replaced Michelle Pamment, who has gone freelance.

Thompson worked at Elle with Charlotte Moore, who will join Marie Claire as features editor next week, replacing Katie Agnew. Moore was previously contributing editor at Red, features writer at Elle and a writer on the Daily Express.

O'Riordan said: 'Those two have a lot of glossy and commissioning experience. Charlotte's worked on newspapers and Vanessa's edited before.'

She said the mix of Marie Claire's features pages, which are known for longer pieces on social issues as well as lighter articles, will be untouched. 'The basic ethos will definitely be the same.I regard myself as a core reader: I do want a guide to shopping but I also want (more in-depth) stuff to read.'

She admitted there are more 'bitty' pages and celebrity stories than was the case ten years ago, but said this reflected changes in people's reading habits.

O'Riordan believes the title will benefit from the deal with Time, which also owns the glossies InStyle and Wall-paper* in the UK. 'Marie Claire is a global brand and Time is famous for being very brand-oriented.'

This will help in the increasingly competitive magazine market, she insisted.

'Closures will continue as too many titles were born over the last few years and newsstands were cluttered.'

Marie Claire is published by European Magazines, a joint venture between IPC Media and Groupe Marie Claire.

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