Jason Binn, founder and CEO of regional luxury lifestyle publisher Niche Media, transitions to the role of chairman of Niche Media Holdings while current COO Katherine Nicholls will take over as president and COO.
Binn founded Niche Media in 1998 and built a stable that included Hamptons Magazine, Aspen Peak, Boston Common, Capitol File, Gotham, Los Angeles Confidential and Michigan Avenue. In 2007, The Greenspun Media Group acquired Niche Media.
"Under Jason’s leadership, Niche Media grew and launched in 10 major markets, publishing over 80 issues annually across the country," said Greenspun Media chairman Brian Greenspun. "His vision and dedication over the past 20 years was critical in enabling the company to weather the economic downturn and emerge in a strong position entering 2011."
"As chairman of Niche Media, I will continue to support our team and provide guidance as it expands into new territory," Binn said in a statement. "Over the past several months I have had the opportunity to pursue some personal interests and I look forward to dedicating more time to those while also exploring new opportunities to continue helping shape the future of our company."
The "luxe" model-glossy, high-end magazines that were freely distributed to select demographics, hotels and retailers-of publishers such as Niche, Greenspun and Modern Luxury-were all the rage in the city and regional market five years ago, boasting big city glitz and fat books full of ad pages from high-end national and international brands.
However, the economic downturn, too few local advertisers (and the subsequent private equity woes affecting publishers in all categories) took a toll on the market. While Greenspun shuttered titles such as Atlanta Peach and at one point laid off 10 percent of its workforce, the company seems to have endured better than peers like Modern Luxury (which lost CEO Michael Kong after GE Financial Services took over the company; Kong sued Modern Luxury just as the company agreed to a sale to Dickey Publishing) and 944 Media, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, spurred by several "potentially burdensome lawsuits."