Media24 today announced plans to close celebrity niche magazine heat. The company said this was in line with a clear plan to accelerate its digital-first strategy to best serve its fast growing digital audiences while consolidating its print portfolio behind its strongest brands.
“It is always difficult to close a magazine but international and local trends show that celebrity-only print titles are in decline,” said Minette Ferreira, head of Media24’s weekly magazines. “Many of our print titles have excellent celebrity content and we believe heat readers will migrate to incredibly powerful brands such as YOU and Grazia. For breaking celebrity news the internet has become the source for celebrity junkies and we are well positioned to capitalise on this through our fast-growing celebrity sites,” she added.
To build digital scale, Media24 celebrity sites Channel24 (www.channel24.co.za), and The Juice (www.thejuice.co.za) will soon merge to become a one-stop celebrity megasite, with a strong focus on South African stars.
Lisa MacLeod, Media24’s head of digital publishing, said: “Media24 is constantly evolving, and we go where our readers are. We are expanding our content offering on digital platforms as we develop a greater understanding of how our readers are consuming content and how we can best meet these needs.”
MacLeod said that the move was a further step in the company’s digital-first strategy. “The merger of Channel24 and The Juice supports our multiplatform publishing approach and our clear mission to service our valued customers on any device at any time.”
Ferreira said staff have been informed about heat’s closure. “We will try as far as possible to accommodate them in alternative positions.”
The last edition of heat will be on street from 27 February.
Image courtesy of Heat.