Shortlist Media free women’s mag ready to launch

Shortlist Media is set to launch its long-planned free national women’s weekly magazine this autumn, it has emerged.

Mike Soutar, Shortlist
Mike Soutar

The title intends to run content that competes with Grazia and Marie Claire and is expected to have an initial print run of 400,000. It will be distributed via the network of street vendors at major commuter stations in six cities which already distribute the free weekly men’s title Shortlist.

Full details are expected to be revealed shortly regarding the publication, which is the second launch in less than two years from the company backed by French Connection founder Stephen Marks and former Emap and IPC director Mike Soutar.

Shortlist launched in September 2007. Its circulation was up 5.1 per cent on the previous six months to 505,970 in the last set of ABC figures issued. The next circulation figures are due next months.

Speculation on a possible women’s title from Shortlist has been circulating since March, provoking a mixed response from media agencies.

Mindshare managing partner Vanessa Clifford told Marketing Week in March that she would welcome such a move with the right content, adding she could see a “gap in the market” for a title that pitches itself “somewhere between the A-list Grazia and Heat, which is aimed at the younger market.”

However Universal McCann’s press chief Eve Samuel-Camps was more sceptical of the publisher’s chances. “The women’s magazine market is far more established, bigger and competitive than the men’s so I would question if there is a market for a free title,” she told Marketing Week.

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