Crown ventures into custom publishing with new magazine – Crystal.

Melbourne-based Niche Group has announced the launch of a new publishing project with entertainment group, Crown Melbourne Limited to create a high-end magazine to be named Crystal.

The large-format, high-quality magazine will be tailored to the premium leisure market and will be distributed throughout Crown’s properties in Melbourne, Perth, Macau and London and sent to the company’s elite list of VIPs around the world.

“We worked very hard to ensure we understood Crown’s specific requirements, said Paul Lidgerwood, managing director of Niche Group. “This coupled with our strength in targeted editorial and our existing experience in luxury and international markets makes us well placed to manage this project.”

The first edition is scheduled for release mid-2009 and is expected to be quarterly after issues one and two. Kylie Flavell, a senior editor at Niche Media has been appointed as the editor. Flavell will oversee the publication in conjunction with her current work on the title, Marketing.

“We are extremely happy to be partnering with a market-leading and progressive brand like Crown,” said Rosanna Anderson, publisher of Niche Media’s Welcome to luxury travel series and Crystal. “This publication presents an exciting opportunity to reach an exclusive market on an international scale.”

The content will be dedicated to showcasing the finest accommodation, dining, shopping, entertainment and leisure activities at all of Crown’s properties and their destination cities.

According to a study on the luxury market late last year the forecast is mixed for mid-range brands that are only just falling into the ‘luxury’ bracket, however, the brands defined as ‘pure luxury’ are in for a steady year. The Luxury Goods Worldwide Market Study commissioned by Altagamma, the Italian association of Italian luxury goods companies, reported the following on the Baine and Company website:

“Consumers of Accessible brands, characterised by affordability, status and membership, and represented by such brands as Coach and Ralph Lauren, are directly affected by the current global economy. The segment is significantly under-performing the market, growing only +4% in 2007 versus 2006 and estimated to be flat (+0% growth) in 2008.

Aspirational brands, such as Gucci and Louis Vuitton, are purchased by consumers looking to buy into the lifestyles these brands represent. Their growth remains steady… and will be aligned with market growth in 2008 (+3%).

Absolute luxury brands, like Hermes and Loro Piana, remain truly resilient, as their elitism and brand heritage appeal to the wealthiest global consumers.”

Marketingmag.com.au and Marketing magazine are a part of Niche Groups publication portfolio.