The Global, Digital E-Commerce Of Condé Nast

Birgit Davis

It may not be “where no man has gone before.” But somewhat like Star Trek’s Enterprise, Condé Nast is boldly going where only the smartest go. And that is with platform digitization. Condé Nast is one of the world’s largest and most highly respected mass-media companies. In 2016 it is expanding to “new worlds” with the launch of its new Web presence, Style.com. Operating out of Condé Nast’s London headquarters, Style.com will reach new e-commerce markets through digitization.

Condé Nast’s history

The name, Condé Nast, comes from the publishing empire’s founder, Condé Montrose Nast. In 1909 he purchased Vogue magazine and began his successful media journey. A little like Captain Kirk, his goal was to explore strange new markets and to seek out new brands and new readers. From humble beginnings he shaped Vogue into the world’s leading fashion authority.

Condé Nast’s upmarket products and services have always been geared toward an elite readership. They target the upper social sector rather than aiming for the widest reader base. Condé Nast prides itself in speaking to the world’s most influential audiences. And, with expanded digital capabilities, Condé Nast will monetize its exposure to these specific audiences.

Since 2010, when Robert Sauerberg took over as president, Condé Nast has reduced its reliance on print media advertising. Sauerberg extended the company outward into the digital world and led the development of new digital platforms. He launched new products aimed at the growing audience of technology-savvy consumers. In 2011, it was the first major publishing company to offer iPad subscriptions. And today, Condé Nast offers subscriptions to most of its publications for iPad, Android, and Kindle Fire users.

The capabilities of Style.com

Style.com joins Vogue, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, Gentlemen’s Quarterly, Bon Appétit, Condé Nast Traveler, and 13 other brands in the Condé Nast family.

Its new e-commerce scope is impressive. Style.com will offer fashion brands, of course, but it will also target upscale brands from other sectors such as beauty, travel services, and technology. At first, it will offer up to 200 brands, with more to follow as the business grows in sales and geographic market reach.

Style.com users will be able to order merchandise from the websites of each magazine in the company’s portfolio. They will also be able to receive digitized magazine editions in the form of apps. Soon, magazine readers will be able to place orders by scanning images in the printed magazines.

Digital transformation and hyperconnectivity shape new media industry

Advances in consumer technologies are propelling this digital transformation, and this new hyperconnectivity is shaping the digitization of the entire media industry. Leading companies that take advantage of this digital transformation can better compete and better protect existing revenue streams.

New business models, including over-the-top video distribution (OTT) and embedded content commerce, are emerging to facilitate this process. This smarter world of Big Data and connectivity is reshaping e-commerce and taking it in new directions in order to embrace the empowered consumer, who insists on a more personalized shopping or shared entertainment experience.

Digital platform companies are leading the way by providing the consistent, engaging, interactive, and on-demand experience today’s consumers want. Companies that benefit from digital platform-based interaction have more flexibility to pivot in new directions faster when changes occur in their markets.

Condé Nast is monetizing its media brand and extending its business model, no longer limited to classic media-distribution models. It is now a digital e-commerce giant, leading the field with state-of-the art digitization.

Like Condé Nast, media conglomerate Meredith Corporation, romance publisher Harlequin Enterprises, and the Standard Media Group in Kenya better understand customer preferences, maximize opportunities, and simplify their business models to meet the challenge of making the transition to the digital age by using the SAP platform.

SAP solutions are trusted by 83% of the global media companies on the Forbes 2000 list. Find out how solutions from SAP can help media companies embrace digital transformation.


Birgit Davis

About Birgit Davis

Birgit Davis is a solution manager for Media and Entertainment for the Industry Cloud Solutions organization at SAP. She is responsible for SAP’s solution portfolio for the media and entertainment sector, including co-innovations with customers and partners on topics of digital paid content and media industry software solutions.