This morning’s merger of the Cleo and Dolly mastheads sounds a hollow death knell for the dreams of those aspiring to a long and fruitful career in either glossy magazines or the intrepid hunt for models and bachelors alike, as German parent company Bauer Media announced that the union of two mastheads will result in job losses for half the staff responsible for producing two of the group’s highest circulating and iconic titles.

Bauer announced in a statement that it was “continually reviewing every aspect of its business, looking at new opportunities for growth and investment, whilst ensuring all divisions are working as efficiently and effectively as possible.

This process has revealed the logic of grouping complementary magazine brands within single publishing units to take full advantage of editorial, digital and production resources that further strengthen our mastheads…

Publishers – both in Australia and overseas – have made similar changes as they respond to new opportunities to create strong multi-platform brands across print, web, mobile, social media and events.  The company is now discussing with staff a proposal to bring the teams behind Cleo and Dolly together. An editor-in-chief would be responsible for both titles, with other team members either working directly on the brand or where possible across the two brands.”

Bauer CEO Matthew Stanton added that “it makes sense to bring the staff creating these young women’s lifestyle titles together. The single publishing unit enables us to tap the synergies and expertise between the mastheads to further enhance the reach and relevance of these two much-loved Australian magazine brands.” Also being further enhanced: the workload and stress inflicted on a single team to maintain the success of two separate titles in an industry evidently already experiencing considerable pressure.  

The merger also means that the existing editors of Cleo and Dolly, Sharri Markson and Tiffany Dunk respectively, will now go on to compete in the hopes of becoming the sole surviving editor-in-chief. All staff, who according to The Australian will reportedly have to re-apply for their current jobs, are being consulted on the changes prior to their likely implementation in 2014.

Former editors Lisa Wilkinson and Mia Freedman had the following to say.

via The Australian