Soutar will oversee new launches
IPC Media has announced a radical shake up at board level, which will see Mike Soutar leave his post as managing director of the men’s and entertainment titles to become editorial director across the whole group.
Soutar has been managing director of IPC ignite!, which includes NME, Loaded and Uncut, for two and a half years. He will take charge of recruiting and generating ideas for new launches in the UK which is expected to be a major priority for IPC next year.
Soutar, who made his name as editor of FHM and the US edition of Maxim, will continue to oversee Wallpaper. Although he will be involved in editorial consulting across IPC, the company said editors would not report directly to him.
IPC chief executive Sly Bailey said Soutar was a highly creative editor as well as being "astute" on the commercial side.
"Following our successful integration into the AOL Time Warner organisation, IPC is now fully committed to growing its business. We are focused on building our position as a creative and innovative media business, and a key part of this will be a significant new magazine development and launch programme," she said.
Soutar was unavailable for comment this week, but issued a statement saying: "I’m thrilled and honoured to be taking on the role of editorial director. IPC has the best magazines and editors in the business and I want us to add to our award-
winning portfolio by launching more brilliant, breakthrough, famous new magazines." Time Inc is keen to adapt some of IPC’s titles to the US market and there is a strong possibility that American titles could launch soon in the UK. "We have the talent and ideas, as well as the full support of our colleagues at Time Inc. There’s going to be some exciting times ahead," Soutar said.
The shake-up also sees Tim Brooks transfer from his current post as managing director of IPC Southbank, which includes Marie Claire and 19, to replace Soutar as MD of IPC ignite!
Brooks, who will also continue to oversee IPC’s division in Australia, said IPC ignite! was a strong business with "bags of opportunities".
Sandy Whetton, managing director of Raven Fox, the travel and retail arm of Euromoney Institutional Investor, will return to IPC to succeed Brooks as managing director of IPC Southbank.
And in a move which is a first for IPC, highlighting the importance attached to marketing, IPC’s group marketing director, Philippa Brown, has been appointed to the board. Brown, who is concentrating on forging links with other divisions in AOL Time Warner, said marketing remained "at the top" of the business.
By Ruth Addicott