Only a few years after Lady Monika Bacardi co-founded the AMBI Group, the Italian
businesswoman co-purchased the French Magazine, PHOTO. By doing so, she has deepened her business interests in the creative sector while reviving a cornerstone in the world of visual arts and photography in particular.
Founded in 1967, the iconic PHOTO Magazine has always been respected both in the media and in the arts world. The magazine deals with photography in all its aspects, from photojournalism to fashion.
Daniel Filipacchi created it on an idea of Paris Match photojournalist Walter Carone. The first cover in July 1967 featured Catherine Deneuve photographed by David Bailey. From its early days, the magazine benefited from a special aura and from the support of iconic photographers such as Brassai, Cartier-Bresson and Willy Rezzo. By promoting the works of amateurs through readers’ contests, Photo quickly became a commercial success with half the sales made abroad.
Unfortunately, the magazine suffered in recent years from the decline in advertising
expenditures, including those traditionally made by the digital camera manufacturers weakened by competition from smartphones.
A subtle but efficient metamorphosis
When Monika Bacardi co-purchased it in 2014, the magazine was on the verge of closing. But the Italian businesswoman felt that such a landmark should not disappear and started to push the magazine through a small but efficient metamorphosis.
The format has been changed and made smaller while the basis weight of its pages has been increased. Monika Bacardi’s intuition is to make of Photo a magazine that you would want to keep and not throw away every month. Traditionally centred on image only, Photo’s new formula will leave more space to textual content. It will also include more lifestyle.
Creating new appointments with the readers
PHOTO Magazine’s new team also wants to create special appointments with special issues. In November 2014, the magazine featured a special Paris Photo edition; in December the same year, an issue dedicated to top models; in May 2015, the Los Angeles Special Issue of of PHOTO featured a cover story of the festival Paris Photo... The website of the magazine will eventually become a sales area of art photography.
Monika Bacardi aims at doubling the sales within three years, currently at 18,000 copies in France and 25,000 abroad. The magazine’s circulation has already been increased to 45,000 within the first months of its acquisition in August 2014, will be more luxurious.
Three pillars have been defined to support new strategic orientations: quality upgrading,glamor and celebrity. The year 2015 has already been rich in novelty for the magazine: newwebsite competition models (Photo Selfie Next Model), new sections, new activities related to the world of photography.
Revealing and fostering new talents
Monika Bacardi also decided to develop the traditional amateur contests to strengthen PHOTO’s role as a developer of talent. Besides being published and sold in the magazine and on the website, the most talented amateurs will be selected to get support from a new division: