New Launches at Meredith and Penske (

Call it a case of fortuitous timing: as the nation’s unemployment rate approaches historic levels and Americans brace for the second major economic downturn in a decade, Meredith Corp. announced this week that it just so happens to have a new personal-finance-focused print and digital magazine ready for launch after months of quiet preparation behind the scenes.

Edited by VP and editorial director Diane di Costanzo and executive editor Catey Hill, who joined Meredith this month from MarketWatch, one-million copies of the first quarterly issue of Millie are being mailed out to subscribers to Real Simple this week, bundled with that magazine’s May issue. Millie‘s social and digital channels are expected to go live this month as well.

Targeted toward women of all ages and addressing “all aspects of personal finance,” Millie has already landed an exclusive launch partner in Synchrony Financial, a consumer financial services company specializing in private-label credit cards and online banking.

“As the pandemic spreads throughout the country and Americans are adapting to the evolving economic circumstances, Millie‘s purpose takes on greater meaning as women look for financial advice and solutions for themselves and their family,” said Catherine Levene, president of Meredith Digital, in a statement. “As a company that serves women at every stage of their lives, we’re even more committed to providing this kind of information. We also appreciate the support of Synchrony, a company that has demonstrated their passion for empowering women from diverse backgrounds to control their financial futures.”

Separately, the COVID-19 pandemic has failed to disrupt the launch of another Meredith magazine. A new quarterly publication helmed by celebrity cook Ayesha Curry is still slated to hit newsstands—those that remain open, that is—in May. This week, Curry posted a “The Devil Wears Prada”-inspired Instagram video revealing the forthcoming magazine’s title: Sweet July.

“Why? Well, all three of our babies were born in July, we got married in July and it’s the 7th month in the calendar year,” Curry explained. “It’s the time in my life where I find I have the most joy and excitement. I wanted to carry that through everyday and simply honor and find gratitude in the big and the small moments.”

Penske Media Corp. is getting into sports. The parent company of Rolling Stone, Variety and WWD, among others, announced this week the launch of an additional brand, Sportico, a digital vertical covering the business of sports, which chairman and CEO Jay Penske says will complement the company’s existing brands serving the entertainment, fashion, music and media sectors.

Led by president and CEO Dick Glover, who previously held executive roles at, NASCAR, ESPN and World Wrestling Entertainment, as well as editor-in-chief and head of content Scott Soshnick, a former longtime sports business reporter at Bloomberg, Sportico will officially launch at some point this summer, though no official date has been announced.

Elsewhere at Penske, Variety announced the launch of a new paid subscription product for entertainment industry executives: the Variety Intelligence Platform (VIP). Priced at $39.99/month or $399.99/year, Variety says a VIP subscription includes a dedicated, weekly email newsletter, monthly deep-dive special reports and “frequent provocative commentary,” as well as exclusive videos and slide decks.

In an announcement, the company emphasized that the news is not tantamount to implementing a digital paywall; Variety‘s regular content will continue to be freely accessible, with a separate team producing content for VIP as a standalone product.
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