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12 Apr

EXCLUSIVE: South China Morning Post Unveils Revamped Luxury Complement

NEW STYLE: Goodbye Style, hello Style by SCMP.

The high-end lifestyle complement of the Hong Kong-based English-language every day newspaper South China Morning Post (SCMP) will relaunch on Friday with a latest outlook.

“My aim is to make [Style by SCMP] global but relevant to our readers,” said Style by SCMP’s newly minted chief editor Vincenzo La Torre, who previously served because the newspaper’s fashion editor since 2017, also working on its Post weekend complement and the previous Styles edition.

He claimed that “if there’s a publication in Asia that may put out [a supplement] that may hold its own against [The Financial Times’] Tips on how to Spend It and T Magazine, it could be SCMP,” owing to its position as a regional newspaper of record that was founded in 1903.

Describing the new edition as a “full relaunch” in step with Hong Kong’s post-pandemic reopening, La Torre said he desired to “highlight people who find themselves global and in addition very Asian.”

“I want to cater to our local readers but not make [the supplement] provincial,” continued the editor, who identified that publishing in English “already makes [the newspaper and its supplements] area of interest in comparison with Chinese-language publications.”

With most of its English-language competition specializing in society topics, Style by SCMP will cover the posh industry from a consumer but additionally a business perspective.

“Our readers know [brands] but for me, introducing them to the people behind doesn’t just mean the designers but additionally the chief executive officers because that provides a greater overview of what a brand is,” he continued.

And putting within the complement “cool personalities from the [Asian] region, since it’s not nearly Hong Kong,” a global metropolis but a comparatively small territory, will even help broaden its readership — currently skewing male and 40-and-up in age — and reach. Its online strategy, specifically, will encompass the entire Southeast Asia region.  

Vincenzo La Torre, chief editor of Style by SCMP and the style editor of Post Magazine.

Antony Dickson/Courtesy of South China Morning Post

For the 98-page April issue, he interviewed Wesley Ng, cofounder and chief executive officer of tech accessories brand Casetify, in his Crosby Studios-designed office; and for May, it is going to be the turn of Wil Fang, the U.S.-born and raised founding father of luxury treats company Cookie Department, which La Torre described as “the Supreme of cookies.”

Other content pillars will include jewelry, watches, travel, wellness — a subject that hadn’t really been broached for the publication — but additionally the important thing issue of “responsible luxury,” somewhat than sustainability.

“Just telling people you could buy less stuff will not be the appropriate approach. I need to teach them [by showcasing] what I mean by ‘buy less but higher’ or ‘the appropriate product,’” he continued.

If the primary cover by Canadian photographer Mike Ruiz features French model Jean Baptiste Paquini wearing a Versace top and wearing Van Cleef & Arpels jewelry feels a surprising selection for an Asia-based publication, it’s a deliberately disruptive selection to mark this latest era, based on La Torre.

Celebrities usually are not off the table but La Torre is intent on putting on the complement’s cover a spread reflecting a readership that features the Hong Kong born and raised in addition to expatriates from around the globe, including those of Chinese descent.

South China Morning Post’s chief operating officer Kevin Huang said the newspaper is “dedicated to nurturing communities that bring together brands and influencers who’re united by their pursuit of data, well-being, betterment and success.”

Style by SCMP can have 10 print issues a 12 months, with double issues for July-August and January-February, available bundled with a Friday edition of the newspaper or distributed through luxury hotels, spas and airport lounges.

The every day paid circulation of the Alibaba-owned newspaper is on average 105,347, based on the Hong Kong Audit Bureau of Circulation, with a print readership of 350,000 for its every day and Sunday Morning Post editions, from a Nielsen Media Index report for the fourth quarter of 2020.

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