Tuesday, December 9, 2008

#247 ACP's Runway Reporter to be shut down


Runway Reporter

This is not a good time to be in publishing.

A very reliable source has just called me with the news that the plug has been pulled on ACP Media New Zealand's "online home of Fashion Quarterly" Runway Reporter. ACP acquired the site in September 2006, a mere six months after it had been started by New Zealand's venerable fashion-reporter-turned-pony-book-author Stacy Gregg.

UPDATE: This was just emailed to me from a source within ACP Media:

"They (ACP management) told Fiona Hawtin (editor of Fashion Quarterly) yesterday afternoon and told [the rest of the staff] this morning...Runway reporter is closing very soon in the next couple of weeks. It was a financial decision, they are cutting all the acp websites...cleo, metro, taste etc 8 people were made redundant over the company. Chloe De Ridder has been made redundant and it is believed Megan Bedford will be staying on as featured ed of Fashion Quarterly."

An employment lawyer told me this morning that along with ACP, Fairfax and APN were having major problems and it looked like we could expect some more mass redundancies over the next few weeks.

UPDATE: 10/12 12:30pm I contacted ACP Media's Auckland head office at approx 10am this morning for a comment and they're yet to return my call.



26 comments:

Murray Bevan said...

This is indeed a big loss to the industry, but I'm sure it will spur on some good independent sites and blogs that can help fill the gap.

Paul Reynolds said...

Runway was independent. Time to go back to its routes. But it needs a business plan/ and/or an angel
Great brand. Someone should get behind it and the people who built it.
Paul reynolds

Anonymous said...

ACP are closing ALL their websites? Amazing! More info please as it comes to hand...

Anonymous said...

This sucks big time...it was the only place to see New Zealand designers full collections so it sucks for the industry too

Michael said...

I do think the move to ACP was a major step in the wrong direction for the site, though. To stay independent, although not as lucrative for the founders, would probably see the site still going now, and having not lost as much credibility.

Bryanboy said...

Bad move. Really bad move.

If anything, those media firms should focus on growing their online presence more than anything else.

Sad to see RR go...

Guy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Every big(ger) and middle fashion companies are going down.

Anonymous said...

This is so sad! I believe however that Cleo and Taste will be continuing however run outside of ACP, so they are not closing all websites.

Someone save RR!!

Anonymous said...

actually.. it wasn't the only place to see the collections...

NZ Fashion week has desktop TV and slideshows of the collections... but yes, it was good to have fashion week and lookbooks in one place..
though to be honest I didn't think that they really did the best job of it..

Claire said...

I'm gutted, as a shopaholic RR is where I do my research because they show all styles that you can't see on a lot of the designers sites.

It has become a bit of a party people tabloid site rather than a fashion site recently which is a little boring but I guess that's what it must do in between seasons.

So sad to see it go but I'm sure something else will start soon enough.

I agree with Bryanboy, isn't online where it is going?
I'm going to stop buying magazines incase I end up homeless from the recession, so online only it is.

Anonymous said...

Who wants to make a guess as to who will jump up and create an independent website that will fill the gaping hole that this will leave within the industry? (full collections etc)

Anonymous said...

i would have thought flossie.com would

Anonymous said...

Anon,
Doesn't desktop TV only have fashion week shows? Not lookbooks?

Anonymous said...

I think Flossie's too big and too broad to just take care of the niche market that RR catered to. FashioNZ, NZ Girl and Gloss aren't right, either.

Also, you need the site to be led by a well-respected fashion journo. That's why RR had so much cred when it was started, and why it took flight so quickly and effortlessly.

I think this site should step up and start filing more stories to fill the gap in the meantime. Isaac - you up for it?

murray said...

I do think that someone should pick up the pieces soon and fill the gap. The NZ fashion industry has developed so much in the last 5 years that it would be a shame if there wasn't an on-line portal to report on it and track its progress.

Anonymous said...

i loved the party pics and street snaps - a good way to see what real people are wearing. thats what I'll miss. i hope someone can keep that going - nz is lacking that kind of thing

Anonymous said...

What does ACP itself have to say about this, if anything?

murray said...

LA-based street-style site www.TurnedOut.tv do that to some extent here. They even have a New Zealand editor. I think it will be up to sites like this to pick up the slack.

Anonymous said...

which coincidentally is Isaacs girlfriend Jordan right?

Anonymous said...

wow. that is horrible news! runway reporter is one of the first sites i check every morning. this recession bites! i'm just hoping someone else will take up where they leave off. this is really, really sad.

Phil said...

Check out www.thread.co.nz - this site could likely fill the gap.

Anonymous said...

Er, Thread is pretty much just press releases copied and pasted...

Amber said...

Love the collections coverage at runway reporter and lookbooks, hate the C-grade NZ celebrity bullshit. Boring... About Town already does a good (bad?) job of that. Best to keep it contained.

Pity if it does go however (esp. Metro!) because there is no denying the power of digital when it's well managed.

Anonymous said...

as much as you may hate "C-grade celebrity bullshit" Runway Reporters Party People is one of the most popular and viewed sections of the site by far. It has never aimed to be celebrity oriented but more about peoples style. It is a hugely relevant section that includes the public in the site and pulls a lot of readers.

Runway Reporter is huge loss to New Zealand's Fashion Media industry and would be a huge task to replicate on the same scale, it would also take a long time to obtain the same credibility as what RR has achieved, however I hope someone can do this!

Anonymous said...

OMG! I can't live without Runway Reporter, I used to go on every day and I know so many people who loved it too. There is no other website like it and it's a devastating loss. I so hope somebody comes up with a replacement to showcase New Zealand's fashion industry.